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Headwater Science Center's Laddie Elwell to be honored

Former Bemidji State University faculty member and executive director of the Headewaters Science Center Laddie Elwell will be inducted into the Northwest Women's Hall of Fame during an 11:30 a.m. ceremony Saturday, Feb. 27.

The hall of fame ceremony serves as the official kickoff to the BSU women's studies program's month-long series of events to celebrate March as Women's History Month.

The event, themed "Writing Women Back Into History," will be held at the Beaux Arts Ballroom in BSU's upper Hobson Memorial Union. Tickets for the event, which includes a luncheon, are available for $20, or $15 for senior citizens and students. Tickets must be purchased by Wednesday, Feb. 24.

Elwell taught at BSU as an associate professor of biology from 1970-1980, and has occasionally taught as an adjunct faculty member since 1980.

Elwell is perhaps best known in the northern Minnesota region for the birth and growth of Bemidji's Headwaters Science Center. In 1988, she founded Opportunities in Science, Inc., a science education non-profit organization that founded Bemidji's HSC.

By the center's 15th anniversary in 2003, it had served more than 255,000 visitors and reached another 50,000 people through various outreach efforts.

Rather than taking up leisurely activities in retirement, Elwell dedicated her time to bringing the wonders of science to the public, nurturing many young scientists along the way.

Now in its 12th year, the Hall of Fame is a collaborative project sponsored by the Northwest Minnesota Women's Fund, a component of the Northwest Minnesota Foundation, and BSU. The Hall of Fame is posted on the fourth floor of the A.C. Clark Library at BSU.

The Hall of Fame provides permanent recognition for women of northwestern Minnesota who have made significant contributions to art, athletics, business, government, philanthropy, humanities, science or education.

Portraits and a record of each inductee's contributions are added to the Hall of Fame following each year's induction ceremonies, and a traveling display is available to be loaned to interested groups in the region.

Elwell's induction will bring membership in the Northwest Minnesota Women's Hall of Fame to 24.

Tickets must be purchased in advance and are available at the BSU cashier's office. For more information, call 218-755-3993 or 877-346-2539.

For more information or to receive a complete schedule of Women's History Month events, please contact Louis Jackson with the BSU social work program at 218-755-2880. Information is also available on the Northwest Minnesota Foundation's Web site at