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Nelson, Macaulay-Bradt join Women's Hall of Fame

Maureen Nelson, left, and Dona Macaulay-Bradt were honored Wednesday, March 14 with inductions into the Women's Network Hall of Fame. Samantha Bengs / RiverTown Multimedia

In tune with March's celebration of women's history, Red Wing Women's Network celebrated the accomplishments of two local women. Maureen Nelson and Dona Macaulay-Bradt were honored with inductions into the organization's Hall of Fame.

Network members and friends and family of Nelson and Macaulay-Bradt gathered for a luncheon program at the St. James Hotel on March 14. The Women's Network Hall of Fame awards focus on women who have contributed to the city's growth and development.

Both Macaulay-Bradt and Nelson were recognized for their volunteerism within Red Wing.

The inductees

Nelson currently serves as the executive director of the United Way for Goodhue, Wabasha and Pierce counties.

"She is forward thinking and constantly looking for ways to serve the needs of all people," said Debby Bradley, who nominated Nelson.

"Maureen is instrumental in helping folks to not just give, but be advocates and get their feet on the ground by focusing volunteers in the areas where they feel the most effective and needed."

Throughout Nelson's career, she has had a hand in just every club and commission in the community. Nelson said her zest for volunteering started early, as she recalls making posters with her parents for various events.

"Volunteering is the life force of this community," Nelson said. "Just think of what volunteers have done and continue to do to change, improve and inspire others in our community. What would we do without them?"

Macaulay-Bradt has impacted the lives of thousands of students during her time teaching at Sunnyside Elementary School. Former students recall her clever rhymes to remember states and presidents and her famous headstands. Macaulay-Bradt was the driving force behind creating Red Wing's Arts Alive program — an outlet for children to explore areas of visual and performing arts. Arts Alive is now nearing its 30th year. Macaulay-Bradt also taught internationally, serving as an exchange teacher in Quzhou, China. She is very active with the Sister Cities Commission, having visited Quzhou numerous times.

Macaulay-Bradt said her endeavors in life have all been labors of love.

"Passion and fun, that's what the world needs over," she said. "If every town was like Red Wing, it would make such a difference in the way people feel about themselves - not on a government basis, but a people to people basis."

Macaulay-Bradt and Nelson join over 30 women who have been inducted into the Hall of Fame: Lisa Bayley, Ruth Nerhaugen, Evy Wedde, Carmen Edwards, Liz Hedin, Heidi Jones, Evelyn Sweasy, Diane Hallstrom, Anne Jones, Kay Kuhlman, Judy Christianson, LaVonne Lommel, Gladys Savage, Helen Bell, Joan Foot, Pam Horlitz, Neela Mollgaard, Audrey Bennett, Roseanne Grosso, Linda Thielbar, Jane Dankers, Donna Dummer, Anne Jacobson, Lois Burnes, Carol Duff, Carolyn Hedin, Mary Weigenant, Jeanne Ode, Gertrude Richardson, Berdell Eastlund, Dorothy Holmes, Suzanne Blue, Marcy Doyle, Mary Miller, Jean Chesley, Catherine Ullrich and Marjorie Gray Vogel.