Jasper County Community Foundation advisory board gains two members

Karen Meinhart (left) and Lora Short (right) are the newest members of the Jasper County
Community Foundation advisory board

The board of directors of Southeastern Illinois Community Foundation recently appointed Lora Short and Karen Meinhart to three-year terms on the Jasper County Community Foundation advisory board.

Lora Short is a retired school psychologist with a passion for supporting youth programs in Jasper County. Lora graduated from Newton Community High School in 1958 and Eastern Illinois University in 1972. She later returned to school to obtain a Master’s degree in school psychology in 1980 and worked in the Effingham School District for the majority of her career and served several years as the representative of East Central Illinois with the Illinois School Psychology Association.

Lora and her late husband, Larry D. Short, were always interested in school and community activities, especially in sports and band, which their three children were involved in. Since the loss of her husband five years ago, Lora has continued that interest and has many enjoyable memories from working with these youth-based activities. When her children were young, Lora was a member of the PTO and served as a den mother for Cub Scouts and Girl Scouts. She also worked with the Marching Eagles Band Boosters and Jasper County Belts traveling softball team. She currently serves on the Jasper County Museum Board and is a member of 100 Women Who Care Jasper County.

Karen Meinhart, a native of Jasper County, moved back to Newton with her husband, Bill, in 2009. Educated at Decatur Memorial Hospital School of Nursing and Millikin University, Karen is now a retired R.N. with specialty experience in the Emergency Department and Obstetrics/Genecology. Her post-career involvement includes a decade of kids ministry leadership, Homeowner’s Association President and mission trips to Pakistan and Africa.

Currently a member of New Hope Church in Newton, Karen mentors with Newton’s PUSH Ahead organization (encouraging women with children) and Newton Elementary School. Other activities are weekly senior citizen meal delivery with ERBA and serving at The Master’s Hands (a Christ-based source for compassion and food) in Newton. She is also a member of 100 Women Who Care Jasper County. Very thankful for their rural hometown backgrounds, Karen and husband, Bill, were keenly interested in moving back to their families and roots. Understating this value and importance drives their intention to “give back” to the community.

According to Karla Koeble, chair of the Jasper County Community Foundation advisory board, “We are thrilled with the addition of Lora and Karen to our local advisory board. Their passion for local giving and their knowledge of the needs of our community will be great assets to the local community foundation.”

Jasper County Community Foundation, an affiliate of Southeastern Illinois Community Foundation, was established in 2013 and manages 10 component funds and more than $325,000 in assets.

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