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Shannon Hanzel posthumously honored with 2023 Benedictine Board Member of the Year Award

On Sept. 13 at the Benedictine Annual Conference in Duluth, Minn., Benedictine posthumously honored Shannon Hanzel, Winona, Minn., with the 2023 Board Member of the Year Award.

Quinn Hanzel, daughter of Jim and Shannon Hanzel, accepted the 2023 Board Member of the Year Award on her mother’s behalf from Sister Joan Marie Stelman, OSB, Benedictine senior vice president, Mission Integration.

The Benedictine Board Member of the Year award recognizes an individual serving or has served on a Benedictine Living Community board who demonstrates exceptional leadership and brings the Benedictine Mission and Core Values to life in extraordinary ways.

In her nomination, it was noted that Shannon Hanzel served as a Benedictine Living Community-Winona Foundation board member for seven years, and before her term, assisted her husband Jim, who also served on the Benedictine Winona Board of Directors and the Benedictine Winona Foundation Board.

In her nomination, it was noted that as a young woman, Hanzel was determined to become a nun, but love steered her away from that calling. Instead, she exhibited her faith through her works. She taught for many years, enriching lives with her selfless giving of herself to her students.

Generous with her time and talents, Hanzel volunteered her time in many areas. She visited the sick, participated in book and birthday clubs, and reached out to those in need. Even days before her death in April, she was still reaching out to others with encouragement and support.

“We miss her and are thankful to be able to honor her good works and her memory with this award,” said Carol Ehlinger, executive director, Benedictine Winona.