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Keene State College Honors New Hampshire's Outstanding Women

Photo by Mark Corliss; Left to right: Helen Giles-Gee, Jane Difley, Jaclyn Vehlies, Susan Margraf, Suzette Borden
Photo by Mark Corliss; Left to right: Helen Giles-Gee, Jane Difley, Jaclyn Vehlies, Susan Margraf, Suzette Borden

KEENE, N.H., 4/7/10 - Keene State College hosted its 20th annual celebration of New Hampshire women’s accomplishments and creativity, “Writing Women Back Into History,” on Monday, April 5. This annual event recognizes women who have made extraordinary contributions to the college, regional, and state communities with awards based on exceptional service and leadership, especially in the area of equality for women. Pictured are KSC President Helen Giles-Gee with the 2010 award recipients:

Monadnock Region: Suzette Borden, president, Sophia’s Hearth Family Center Board of Directors

Suzette Borden will be honored for her decades of work with nonprofit organizations and her ability to discern people’s hidden gifts and harness them for the common good. She has worked as coordinator of volunteers for the Monadnock Volunteer Center and is an active member of Keene Kiwanis Club. In 2008, she joined the board of directors of Sophia’s Hearth Family Center, was named president, and took on leadership of the capital building campaign. Sophia’s Hearth opens its new facility on Court Street in Keene this spring.

State of New Hampshire: Jane A. Difley, president/forester, Society for the Protection of New Hampshire Forests

Since 1996, Jane Difley has served as president and forester of the Society for the Protection of New Hampshire Forests (SPNHF), the first woman to hold this position. The SPNHF is a 10,000-member nonprofit organization founded in 1901 to protect New Hampshire forests from the clear-cutting then practiced. Over the years, the SPNHF has protected New Hampshire’s most iconic places: Mount Kearsarge, Mount Monadnock, Crawford Notch, Franconia Notch, Sandwich Notch, and the Hampton salt marshes. Difley’s leadership recently provided the impetus for New Hampshire Everlasting, a bold initiative that calls for the SPNHF and many partners to protect an additional million acres of New Hampshire land by the year 2026.

Staff, Keene State College: Susan B. Margraf, academic year counselor, Upward Bound, Keene State College

Since 1984, Susan Margraf has worked for Keene State College as a counselor in the Upward Bound program, helping prepare low-income high school students for success in college. A licensed clinician and determined advocate, she works in regional high schools during the academic year, meeting one-on-one with individual students who are often the first in their family to go to college. A resident of Keene, she has volunteered throughout the Keene community and the state, serving on the boards of directors for Keene Family YMCA, Home Healthcare and Community Services, Monadnock United Way, Monadnock Youth Services, and many other agencies.

Student, Keene State College: Jaclyn Vehlies

Jaclyn is a senior at Keene State, majoring in history with a certification in secondary education. This semester, she is student teaching in Westmoreland, N.H. During her years at Keene State, Jaclyn has been a Big Sister for two years and has served as president of the Bigs Club on campus. Under her leadership, the club was awarded a grant to continue its Get Ready college awareness program at Monadnock Regional High School. Jaclyn has also coordinated the First Book program, done volunteer work at the Catalina Island Nature Conservancy, and was a member of the Keene State Dance Team for three years.

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Keene, New Hampshire 03435