Award Honorees

Nancy Palm Countryman '59
Nancy Palm Countryman '59

Nancy has been a strong advocate for youth and athletics in Minnetonka Schools for many years. Her interest, support and dedicated service over the years through the Diamond Club and Bennett Family Park has guaranteed more children can participate in sports and have excellent facilities to pursue their dreams in Minnetonka athletics.

Nancy was interested in sports early. When she was in high school she was as involved in sports as a girl could be at that time. Most girls' sports were intramural-type leagues. She was active in the Girls Athletic Association (GAA), where she had the opportunity to get out of class to give the boys tennis team competition during their practices, and she, "just had to take advantage." She focused on tennis, and in the late 1950's was the #1 ranked female tennis player in Minnesota, but also played baseball and softball, "with the guys." She also was the advertisements editor of the yearbook.

Born in Minnetonka, Nancy has never moved more than two and a half miles from her birthplace. Her grandparents emigrated from Scotland and only achieved a sixth grade education. "They always put an emphasis on the importance of education, and voted for school levies and referendums," she said. She is fully committed to making Minnetonka the best place for kids. "Minnetonka has always been a close knit community," she said. She attended Groveland Elementary, Deephaven Junior High and Minnetonka High School. "We had great teachers and I think that is why we all did so well. They came to our events. They cared about us."

Nancy has volunteered with Bennett Family Park, home to Minnetonka youth baseball and softball, for 42 years. She served as president twice and currently sits on their board as vice president. "I love this place. There is no other place like it," she said, "Bennett isn't owned by the city, but by the players and families." She recently worked with other volunteers to raise $1.2 million for the complex.

Nancy and her husband, Jim, were married in 1962. They are the parents of four, Steve, Scott, Rob, and Cathy (a former Minnetonka School Board member) and grandparents of five. Nancy attended her 50th class reunion in 2009, and they had a group softball game at Bennett Park.

2017 Alumni Award Honorees
Rob LaRue '97

Inducted into the Skippers Hall of Fame on Sept. 28, 2019.

Craig Bantz '04

Received the Young Alumni Achievement Award on Sept. 28, 2019.

Kelsy Zimba '04

Received the Young Alumni Achievement Award on Sept. 28, 2019.

Juris Terauds

Inducted into the Faculty Hall of Fame on Sept. 28, 2019.

Sue Adamek

Inducted into the Faculty Hall of Fame on Sept. 28, 2019.

Robert (Bob) Naegele '57

Robert (Bob) Naegele '57 received the Distinguished Alumni Award in Memoriam on Sept. 28, 2019.

Lori Palmer '65

Received the Distinguished Alumni Award on Sept. 16, 2017.