Over the past two years, Rural Schools Collaborative has had much to celebrate. We've seen our hub network expand as more folks are eager to collaborate and share in a common vision for rural prosperity, experienced tremendous growth through strategic partnerships, and have gained a national presence through collaborative partnerships, projects, and campaigns.
It is because of the incredible passion of our board members, selflessly giving of their time, resources, and labor, that we have so much to celebrate. Joshua Gibb, Jim Beddow†, and Carol Silvey are counted among the organization's earliest advocates and volunteers. Their deep commitment to building sustainable rural places centered around thriving local schools helped establish the bedrock foundation for RSC’s mission and theory of change.
“Rural Schools Collaborative would not exist without Carol, Josh, and Jim. Their incredible leadership and vision has been beneficial not only for for their local communities, but also for RSC's rural partners across the country.”
Joshua Gibb - Galesburg, IL
(2014 - 2022) Joshua is the 2022 outgoing board chair, and has been an integral part of RSC from the beginning. As the President of the Galesburg Community Foundation, Joshua was instrumental in the launch of RSC's Illinois hub, and supporting the Celia B. Godsil Grants in Place Fellows program. The support of the Galesburg Community Foundation allowed RSC to put down our roots in Illinois, and we are so thankful for Josh's leadership and vision from RSC's inception to today.
Jim Beddow† - Sioux Falls, SD
(2015 - 2022) Dr. Jim Beddow† is among the earliest supporters of RSC's work, and served as our 2017-18 board chair. Jim spent much of his professional life creating and supporting rural-centric initiatives and collaborations. Given his deep connections to South Dakota, Jim was the impetus for RSC's Mitchell, SD meeting that sparked the Rural Teacher Corps learning network. Jim was a strong supporter of many rural teacher grants, and was instrumental in RSC's strategic planning and asset development. Thank you, Jim!
Carol Silvey - West Plains, MO
(2014 - 2022) Carol Silvey, was both a founding RSC board member, and served as the board chair from 2020-2021. Carol's former role as the Senior Associate for Advancement with the Community Foundation of the Ozarks had a strong influence on the continuing collaboration between CFO and RSC. Carol's commitment to the Ozarks community has led to many rural teacher and higher ed collaborations that continue to shape the region. We are so thankful for Carol's guidance and support of RSC!
“Josh, Jim, and Carol have dedicated a combined 23 years of service to RSC. The ways in which the organization has benefitted from their guidance, expertise, and generosity are immeasurable.”
We are sad to close the chapter on their official roles on the board, but look forward to continuing the regional partnerships and lasting friendships that came as a result of their legacies.
As our last founding board members transition to welcome new rural advocates to take the reins, they leave the organization well situated to continue to grow and deepen our mission. Thank you Josh, Jim, and Carol for your years of service and the many gifts and talents you shared with us!
†Dr. Jim Beddow, longtime RSC advocate, board member and chair emeritus, and passed away on June 25, 2023. Read more about his legacy.
January 9, 2024
Why young people return home to teach rural
November 28, 2023
The Impact of Place-Based Learning in Rural Communities
October 31, 2023
The ribbon cutting ceremony marked an expansion of the Great River Teacher Corps program on Future Teacher Day.