The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa


March 26, 2014

Meet the 2014 Woman of Achievement honorees


Her current and past volunteer work includes: Fulton and Albany PTO President, work on civic committees, lector at St. Patrick’s Catholic Church in Albany, Past President and volunteer at the Albany Public Library and of the American Cancer Society Discovery Shop. She is a docent giving tours and information to visitors of the windmill and a member of the Windmill Cultural Center Education Committee, helping to plan, set up educational programs and then assisting to provide the program for school groups. A past member of the YWCA Board of Directors, she remains on as a committee member, helping to plan the event Art Under the Stars. Gaile also has lent her expertise to plan fund-raising events for Mercy Medical Center and the Windmill Cultural Center.

“No one accomplishes anything alone, I am grateful to know so many caring talented people who make everything they touch better and who are willing to let me work with them!” Gaile and husband, Bill, have two children and three grandchildren.


Nominator Kate Marlowe wrote, “They are very clearly “messengers of peace” in today’s world, committed to bringing about positive change in society, working to be the voice for those who have no voice.” The Sisters of St. Francis will receive this year’s Business Leader award.

The congregation of the Sisters of St. Francis was founded in 1866 by the monks of Gethsemani Abbey, near Bardstown, Ky. The sisters were soon teaching in several primary schools in the Louisville diocese. Poverty prevailed in those days after the Civil War, and the sisters found it difficult to house and feed both themselves and their students.

In 1890, the young community of sisters moved to Iowa. Asked to serve at St. Patrick’s School in Clinton, they eventually purchased property bordering Bluff Boulevard, which became their motherhouse, called Mount St. Clare. The sisters opened Mount St. Clare Academy and, in 1914, Mount Alverno Home for the Aged. Mount St. Clare College started as a junior college in 1918, growing to a four-year institution in 1978. The sisters transferred ownership of the college to Bridgepoint Education in 2005, and the school was renamed Ashford University. The new Alverno Health Care Facility opened in 1971. Trinity Senior Living Communities of Livonia, Mich., took ownership in 2013.

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