Moline native vies for national mother of the year


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Posted Online: April 23, 2013, 10:15 pm
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By Leon Lagerstam, llagerstam@qconline.com
Her kids like using air quotes around the phrase "Mother of the Year" if she forgets to pack extra sandwiches for track meets.

Moline native Elizabeth Caswell, now of Portland, Ore., was named Mother of the Year by the Oregon Chapter of American Mothers Inc. She's in New York this week, seeking the National Young Mother of the Year title.

When Ms. Caswell last was in New York, she played piano at Carnegie Hall, the Lincoln Center, as a faculty member at New York University and other venues.

"Now, I'm returning to New York because I'm a mom," she said by phone. "What an interesting path."

Ms. Caswell, 46, is a 1986 Moline High School graduate and 1990 Augustana College graduate. Her parents, James and Barbara Caswell, still live in Moline.

Elizabeth Caswell and her husband, Paul Schipper, have two children, Ian Schipper, 14, and Abigail Schipper, 11.

Ms. Caswell said she was "shocked and stunned" to be named Oregon Young Mother of the Year. "All of the other nominees were so deserving, and all had much larger families. I was very surprised when they read my name and am so very honored."

She's involved in art literacy and art festival programs she founded and chaired and has been a school choir accompanist, Girl Scout leader and Lego Robotics team coach.

Ms. Caswell and her family will spend April 25 to 27 in New York, as she contends for the national title for mothers of children under age 18.

American Mothers Inc., is an interfaith, non-political, non-profit organization that has been honoring "Mothers of the Year" since 1935.

"My kids will be able to see good ol' mom giving a speech at the Waldorf Astoria and trying to fix the world," Ms. Caswell said.

While in New York, she said she also will address the United Nations U.S. delegation about the status of a sewing club she helped form in Uganda, and will urge for more peace-keeping measures there.

She said she's looking forward to hearing from convention speakers that include Kathie Lee Gifford, of "The Today Show," and Sherrie Rollins Westin, executive vice president and chief marketing officer of Sesame Workshop.

















 



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  Today is Saturday, April 19, the 109th day of 2014. There are 256 days left in the year.

1864 -- 150 years ago: Miss McCorkindale has opened millinery rooms over Gimbel's dry goods store, where she offers a choice lot of millinery goods, which she will manufacture to order.
1889 -- 125 years ago: The little South Park Presbyterian chapel celebrated it first Easter decorated with flowers for an afternoon worship service attended by a large congregation.
1914 -- 100 years ago: The Wennerberg Chorus of Augustana College has returned from a 2,000-mile tour in the Eastern states and Illinois.
1939 -- 75 years ago: Col. Charles Lindbergh has stated that he is convinced that Germany's air force is equal to the combined sky fleets of her potential European foes.
1964 -- 50 years ago: Small gas motors may be permitted on boats in the lake to be built in Loud Thunder Forest Preserve. The prospect was discussed yesterday at a meeting of the Rock Island County Forest Preserve Commission.
1989 -- 25 years ago: The annual Dispatch/Rock Island Argus Spelling Bee continues to be a family tradition. Ed Lee, an eighth-grader at John Deere Junior High School, Moline, is the 1989 spelling bee champion from among 49 top spellers in Rock Island, Henry and Mercer counties. He advances to the competition in Washington, D.C. Runnerup was Ed's sister, Susan.






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