Late Counselor Honored With Scholarship

Posted: March 10, 2014

HARRISONBURG — Spotswood and East Rockingham high schools are offering a new scholarship in honor of a well-known counselor who had worked for the division for 40 years.

Jean Madren, one of the first counselors in the county, started working for the district at Montevideo High School in 1956 and then moved to Spotswood High School when it opened in 1980.

Madren died Jan. 25 from bone cancer, at the age of 85. She retired in 1996.

Mike Guinn, who retired in 2002 from Spotswood, worked with Madren as a counselor at Montevideo and Spotswood throughout his tenure at the schools. She was a wonderful colleague, he said.

“I don’t think we ever had any bad days,” Guinn said. “Jean always seemed to have everything in order. I don’t remember anyone who ever had any conflict with.”

While disagreements occurred from time to time, “we worked through it — she was a good leader.”

Two $500 scholarships will be offered, one at each high school, to students interested in going into counseling, education or science. Students should consult their guidance counselors for more information about applying.

Rockingham Educational Foundation, Inc., an organization that provides ancillary support for the division, is helping fund the scholarship, Guinn said. Officials hope to make it available annually, and REFI is looking for people to donate to the fund to keep it going and possibly increase the amount of the awards.

“We’re trying to keep her memory alive with the scholarship,” Guinn said. “She was a good one.”

Contact Kassondra Cloos at 574-6290 or

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