03/19/14 On Thursday evening April 3rd at 6 PM LaSalle Council will be putting on another Soaring Eagle Award Dinner at Christo’s Banquet CenterThis is an annual dinner to recognize someone in the community that has gone above and beyond the normal community service activities.  Soaring Eagle past winners here in Marshall County are Dave Gibson of Gibson Insurance and Plymouth Mayor Jack Greenlee (mayor from 1992-1999.)  Both were awarded their Eagle Scouts as teenagers and have been entrenched in this community ever since.

Along with the Soaring Eagle Award is the Good Turn Award.  This goes to a local company or organization that proves it can also be a great community partner by getting involved in not-for-profit issues.  Past winners in Marshall County are U.S. Granules and American Container.  Both founders of the companies, John Oliver and Leonard Isban, respectively, have done so much for so many over a long period of time. 

April 3rd’s dinner will be honoring Dr. Don Balka Ph.D. of Lapaz as the Soaring Eagle recipient.  Dr. Balka is Professor Emeritus in the Mathematics Department at St. Mary’s College and is the current president of TODOS:  Mathematics for All, a national advocacy organization for underrepresented students.  He has written over 40 books for grades K-12 as well as teachers.

Dr. Balka is also very involved in Marshall County.  He is currently on the Boards of the Marshall County Historical Society, the Marshall County Economic Development Corporation, the Marshall County Community Foundation and the Marshall County Community Resource Center.  He and wife Sharon attend First United Methodist Church in Plymouth.  Don is also an active member of the Lapaz Lions Club.  He was a member of Troop 251 sponsored by First United Methodist Church and was presented his Eagle Scout Award by Milan Levitt.

The Good Turn Award this year will go to Oliver Ford-Lincoln.  The Oliver family has also been great community partners since the dealership’s founding in 1955.  The family of Jack & Jana has carried on the tradition by establishing the Ounce of Prevention Organization in 2003.  Ounce of Prevention has raised over $285,000 since its inception to “unify the small efforts of many to create a greater impact to assist those diagnosed with and affected by cancer in Marshall County, Indiana.” (-Mission Statement)  Ounce of Prevention has numerous events throughout the calendar year that raises money for their mission.  Oliver Ford-Lincoln also is involved in Ford’s Drive One 4URCommunity.  This has also committed several thousands of dollars for local groups such as the United Way of Marshall County, schools, athletic departments and other not-for-profits.  Oliver Ford-Lincoln is truly a community gem.


Tickets are $50 each or a table of 8 is $400.  To reserve tickets call Laura Mann at the Mayor’s Office 574-936-6717.


All proceeds go to the local Boy Scout units of Marshall County