Elena Sliepcevich, died Monday, March 3, 2008 at Norman Regional Hospital. Elena was the third child born to Maksim & Jovanka Sliepcevich on July 29, 1919 in Anaconda, Montana. At the age of 17 she became the youngest student in the state of Montana to earn an elementary teaching certificate. A 1939 graduate of the University of Idaho, Elena received her masters degree from the University of Michigan in 1949 and she was the first woman awarded the Doctor of Physical Education degree by Springfield College. Elena was a professor and coordinator of health education at Ohio State University from 1956-1961, when she was selected to direct the School Health Study (1961-1972). Most health education curricula developed since have been based on the 10 conceptual areas identified by the School Health Education Study. Dr. Sliepcevich also was a visiting professor during summer sessions at the University of Florida, University of California, Los Angeles, University of Oregon and Colorado State College. She joined the faculty at Southern Illinois University at Carbondale (SIUC), where she was a Professor in both the Department of Health Education and the School of Medicine until her retirement in 1992. Elena received many honors during her life, some of which included William Harold Payne Scholar which was the highest award to Masters degree candidate at University of Michigan (1949-50); the Distinguished Service Award from the American School Health Association in 1963; the honor award from Alpha Alpha Chapter of Eta Sigma Gamma, 1986; and election to Phi Kappa Phi and Pi Lambda Theta. She and was elected into University of Idaho graduates Hall of Fame, 1963; received an Honorary Doctorate from University of Idaho in 1987 and was honored as one of the outstanding graduates of the University of Idaho, during their Centennial commencement in 1989. The textbook, Advancing Health Education: The Case Study Method written by Helen P. Cleary and others was dedicated to Dr. Sliepcevich in 1984. In 1979, she was the recipient of the Luther Halsey Gulick Medal, the highest honor the American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance (AAHPERD) can bestow in recognition of long and distinguished service. In 1977, she was the first to receive the AAHE Scholar Award in recognition of a scholarly record for a number of years as evidenced by publications and presentations related to health promotion/education.
Dr. Sliepcevich has contributed outstanding service in numerous professional activities. She served as vice-president of AAHPER and chairman of the Health Education Division, chairman and member of numerous AAHPER committees; membership on the Health Education Curriculum Commission and the Teacher Education Commission; delegate to American National Council for Health Education of the Public. She also served as vice-president for health education for both Eastern and Northwest Districts and at the state level was president of both the Montana and the Massachusetts associations. She was active in related organizations as chairman, School Health Section, American Public Health Association, member, Editorial Board, Journal of School Health; and Fellow, of the American Association for Health Education (AAHE), the American Public Health Association (APHA) and the American School Health Association (ASHA) and in 1972 was named a Distinguished Fellow of the Society for Public Health Education (SOPHE). She also was a member of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the World Future Society, and the Hastings Center.
Dr. Sliepcevich has published professional articles in the AAHPER Journal, Journal of School Health, American Journal of Public Health, NEA Journal, and many others. Dr. Sliepcevich has contributed vitally to the profession through her effective, creative teaching, competent organization and leadership, forceful writing, careful and scholarly research, and sincere dedication to her profession.
In lieu of flowers donations may be made to St. Mark™s Episcopal Church, 105 East 6th Street, Anaconda, MT 59711, St. Sava Seminary Fund, P.O. Box 371, Grayslake, IL 60030-0371, Hearst Free Library 401 Main Street, Anaconda, MT 59711, Marcus Daly Historical Society, 401 E. Commercial Ave, Anaconda, MT 59711.
Elena was preceded in death by her parents, and infant brother Milrod Sliepcevich. She is survived by her sister Natalie Sliepcevich, Norman, OK and her brother and sister-in-law, Dr. & Mrs. Chedomir M. Sliepcevich of Goldsby, OK.
Opelo (Serbian Orthodox Funeral Service) was held on Friday, March 14, 2008 at 1 p.m., New Gracanica Monastery in Third Lake, Illinois. Interment Most Holy Mother of God Cemetery. Memory eternal.
For detailed information please contact: SVETA GORA FUNERAL HOME, Chicago, tel 773-588-2200.
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