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Paul F. Blewett Legacy Funds distribute more than $99,000 to regional nonprofits

MARQUETTE, MI— The Paul F. Blewett Legacy Funds were established at the Community Foundation of Marquette County in 2010 to provide support to multiple local and regional organizations that Paul Blewett, an educator, cared most about.

This year, more than $99,000 was distributed from the fund. Following the wishes of the donor, the Paul F. Blewett Legacy Funds supported 20 organizations this year, including: Bethany Lutheran Church, Michigan Education Association, National Education Association Foundation, National Planned Parenthood, Ishpeming High School, Ishpeming Skiers Training Facilities, Inc., City of Ishpeming Independence Day, Bark River-Harris School District, The American Civil Liberties Union, WNMU Public Radio 90, National Public Radio, American Cancer Society, National Alzheimer’s Association, American Heart Association, American Diabetes Association, American Lung Association, Fortune Lake Lutheran Camp, Salvation Army - Escanaba, Salvation Army - Ishpeming, and the American Red Cross.

Public Radio 90, WNMU-FM is one of the beneficiaries of the Paul F. Blewett Legacy Funds. Public Radio 90 Station Manager Tammy Wixtrom-Johnson said, “[These funds] will be used for the recording and production of our locally produced programs, including The Shuffle with Kurt Hauswirth, Peninsula Performances featuring regional concert performances from across the U.P., In the Pines with music from the Hiawatha Traditional Music Festival, the Porcupine Mountains Music Festival as well as other regional traditional music fests.”

Karen Plasier, a member of the Blewett family and fund advisor said, "As the family of Paul Blewett, we know how much he loved his community. He has been very generous to all the things he was involved with and has left a wonderful legacy for his family."

Born in Ishpeming in 1940, Paul Blewett studied at Michigan Technological University and Northern Michigan University, where he received a master’s degree in mathematics. He enjoyed a long career as a math teacher at Bark River-Harris High School, teaching there for nearly 43 years. He also gave back as a volunteer and officer in many different education associations, most notably as a member of the board of directors for the Michigan Education Association, for 24 years. His biggest fulfillment came from seeing the students he taught excel at school and in life.

Paul was a lifetime member of the Bethany Lutheran Church in Ishpeming, where he enjoyed taking photographs for weddings and church functions. He died in 2009, leaving behind his legacy of giving back to the community and to organizations he loved and respected.

Nicole was born near Detroit but has lived in the U.P. most of her life. She graduated from Marquette Senior High School and attended Michigan State and Northern Michigan Universities, graduating from NMU in 1993 with a degree in English.