Press Releases

For Immediate Release
September 20, 2006 Contact: Charles Evenson

Governor Doyle’s Council on Financial Literacy Announces Nearly $70,000 To Support Pioneering Classroom Projects Created by Wisconsin Educators

Will Help Implement Wisconsin’s Model Academic Standards
for Personal Financial Literacy

(Madison) Wisconsin Department of Financial Institutions Secretary Lorrie Keating Heinemann, on behalf of Governor Doyle’s Council on Financial Literacy, today announced awards totaling nearly $70,000 that will fund 14 financial literacy projects in schools statewide. The Financial Literacy Innovation (FLI) awards, worth up to $5,000 each, are aimed at helping the teachers bring new and creative programs and events into their classrooms to increase the financial knowledge of their students. The projects are expected to reach an estimated 6,500 students this academic year.

“These funds offer educators a rare chance to try original ideas and novel approaches to help their students gain sound financial knowledge they can use throughout their lives,” said Secretary Heinemann. “Research shows that students desperately need this type of education. These projects will also strengthen each school’s commitment to financial literacy now and in the future.”

Ninety-six original ideas were submitted in June by educators from around the state to Governor Doyle’s Council on Financial Literacy. The Council reviewed the submissions and selected the 14 projects to be funded. The Council along with DFI created the fund that will provide the awards. Secretary Heinemann serves as Chair of the Council and CBM Credit Education Foundation President William Wilcox is the Vice-Chair.

The projects selected are implementing the state’s Model Academic Standards for Personal Financial Literacy that was unveiled earlier this year by a task force appointed by State Superintendent Elizabeth Burmaster. The Model Academic Standards’ goal is to bring more financial literacy information into schools. The task force is administered by the Department of Financial Institutions and funded by the CBM Credit Education Foundation, Inc.

The complete list of FLI award winners includes:

  • Sandra Schmandt, Cumberland School District, $5,000
  • Trude Mihalovich, School District of South Milwaukee, $5,000
  • Abbie Thill, St Croix School District, $4,898
  • Mark Luebker, Plum City School District, $5,000
  • Dina Mendola, School District of Cudahy, $5,000
  • James Sonnenberg, Milwaukee Public Schools, $5,000
  • Delaine Stendahl, Whitehall School District, $4,933
  • Barb Hildebrandt, Glidden School District, $5,000
  • Stacey Ryan, Waunakee School District, $3,453
  • Leona Johnson, Ellsworth Community School District, $4,512
  • Judi Olson & Jodi Peterson, DC Everest Area School District , $5,000
  • Marty Gholston, School of Education, UW-Madison, $5,000
  • Peggy Oberdeck, West Allis-West Milwaukee School District, $5,000
  • Mary Witteborg, Gibraltar School District, $3,878

For more information about the FLI project awards, contact David Mancl, Director of DFI’s Office of Financial Literacy at 608-261-9540 or email him at