How LEEF came about.
Wayne and Carol Gullstad lived in Ladysmith for four years prior to moving to the Seattle area in 1999. Though four years is a relatively short time, Ladysmith felt as much “home” as any other place they had lived. The warmth of the community is unique.
Wayne and Carol had success in their efforts to revitalize the old paper mill, although not without significant struggles. Success, however, would not have been possible without the terrific, dedicated work force and a supportive community.
Around 2007, after time to reflect on their experience in Ladysmith, they both decided to do something significant to benefit the community and say “thank you”. A conversation with mayor Dan Gudis and his wife Kathy helped them decide on schools as a great place to do some lasting good.
A newly created endowed fund with Rusk County Community Foundation , previously created by principal/superintendant Mario Freidel and local businessman Bill Rands was the perfect fit for what they wanted to do. Wayne and Carol spurred LEEF’s growth and clarified it’s mission with a $500,000
“This fund is dedicated to providing lasting and meaningful benefit for the students of the Ladysmith School District. It is intended to give the students access to resources and experiences they could not otherwise attain in their normal school routine. We could not be happier to have the opportunity to contribute. Thank you Dan, Kathy, Mario and Bill for helping us make a lasting contribution to the great community of Ladysmith”.
— Wayne and Carol Gullstad