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Keller Scholarship Supports Math, Theatre Students

May 30, 2017
By Deb Daley

Jane Keller had a passion for math and drama who never forgot Mercy High School.

When Jane Keller ’66 passed away in 2016, she put Mercy High School in her will as a beneficiary. Her brothers Paul and Richard decided to create an endowed fund in their sister’s name for math and theatre students. The fund will provide two $500 scholarships annually. The announcement was kept secret until the annual Underclassmen Honors Assembly in May. These awards are given to juniors to be used during their senior year. The bequest will fund about half the endowment with the brothers making up the rest.

“Jane was a Mercy Girl in her heart and was grateful for her education. She wanted other girls to have an opportunity for a Mercy education,” Paul said.

While at Mercy, Jane was a member of the Math Club, McAuley Club and Library Club. She went on to college at both College of St. Mary and the University of Nebraska at Omaha. Jane taught math for 40 years at several Omaha high schools as well as Metro Community College. For 20 years she was the stage manager for the annual Omaha Press Club Show as well as countless shows at the Chanticleer Theatre in Council Bluffs, and the Bellevue Little Theater.

Paul also sent his daughter Amy (Keller) Thomas to Mercy and she graduated in 2007.

“Of course we had the ringing endorsement of Jane to consider when my daughter was looking at high schools. But after we looked at Mercy, the one word our family used to describe Mercy was ‘friendly.’ The decision was made,” Paul said.

Paul, representing the Keller family, presented the two inaugural scholarships this past May to Natalie Harsh for Math and Grace Finn for Theatre. The Juniors were nominated by their respective Math and Theatre Department instructors for their long-term passion, enthusiasm, and commitment in supporting that subject.