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MAQUOKETA, Iowa — A former Oxford Junction, Iowa, woman who apparently had no ties to the district has donated more than $130,000 to the Maquoketa School District for scholarships.

Superintendent Kim Huckstadt announced the donation of $130,165.46 to the district from the late Doris Shimanek, who lived for many years in Oxford Junction, a small community west of Maquoketa.

The superintendent said it’s the largest single gift the district has received. The will specified the funds be used to provide college scholarships for Maquoketa students based on financial need.

Huckstadt said he met Shimanek about a year ago when she showed up unannounced in his office. He said she had a news clipping about a donation to another school and told him she wanted to do something similar for Maquoketa. Huckstadt said she could donate directly to the school or go through the Maquoketa Community Area Foundation.

“She was a nice lady,” he said. “I hadn’t heard a thing until we got this letter. She was very


The superintendent said he will appoint a selection committee for the scholarship and hopes to make awards this spring. By using only the interest off the full amount,

Huckstadt anticipated they could offer four or five $500 scholarships.

Shimanek and her husband, William, lived in Oxford Junction starting in 1959. Shimanek was a registered nurse in Cedar Rapids and Maquoketa and later was a school nurse in Anamosa. She retired in 1985 and moved in 2000 to Iowa City, where she died of colon cancer in April 2007. The couple had no children.

She also donated to the Oxford Junction Senior Center and Oxford Junction Fire Department as well as Cornell College in Mount Vernon.

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(563) 383-2245 or

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