CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo., Feb. 18, 2014 – Harry and Frances “Fran” Rediger of Cape Girardeau will receive the 2014 Friend of the University Award later this month from the Southeast Missouri University Foundation.
Kenneth W. Dobbins, president of Southeast Missouri State University, will present the award at 6:30 p.m. Feb. 28 in the Donald C. Bedell Performance Hall at the River Campus, and said, “Harry and Fran Rediger truly represent Friends of the University. Both have given of their time, talents, and treasures to Southeast and our faculty, staff, and students. In addition, Harry has provided leadership and guidance to our city and community organizations which have been instrumental in building a very rich, collegial relationship between the University and the greater Cape Girardeau community.”
The Friend of the University Award, which recognizes those who support and who are closely associated with the mission, purposes, plans and programs of the University, is the highest honor bestowed by the Southeast Missouri University Foundation. When the Foundation Board established the award, it also established the criteria for the Friend of the University. The Friend of the University must have the respect of the community and the University, and must have acted to confirm their interest and involvement with the University.
Southeast Missouri State University has been a large part of the Redigers’ lives. Mr. Rediger’s advice and counsel has permeated many avenues of University life. He has served in many volunteer capacities and is currently an emeritus member of the Southeast Missouri University Foundation Board, having served as chairman of the Board from 2006 to 2008, and is past president of the Booster Club, now the Redhawks Club. He received the Distinguished Service Award from Southeast in 2006 and served as Homecoming parade marshal in 2011.
<">Mrs. Rediger currently serves as a member of the Southeast Missouri University Foundation Board of Directors. She has been active with the University’s annual Walk for Women’s Athletics, the former Southeast Booster Club, the University Foundation’s Power of Women Luncheon Committee, and has served in an advisory role to Southeast’s College of Education.
The Redigers are members of the Foundation’s President’s Council and Copper Dome Society, and have established the Frances K. Rediger Scholarship through the Southeast Missouri University Foundation. The scholarship is awarded to a Southeast student majoring in education from Cape Girardeau County.
“Fran and I are very honored and humbled to receive the Friend of the University award,” Mr. Rediger said. “We have long been supporters of Southeast and have watched it grow and develop into an excellent university. Southeast Missouri State University is also an important economic contributor to the City of Cape Girardeau and helps solidify our economic regional hub status. We sincerely thank Southeast for considering the Redigers for the 2014 Friend of the University Award.”
Mrs. Rediger attended Nebraska Wesleyan University and is a retired teacher from the Cape Girardeau Public Schools, where she was a teaching assistant for 12 years. She is past president of the Saint Francis Medical Center Auxiliary and has been a Saint Francis Medical Center volunteer for 21 years. Mrs. Rediger has been active with the United Way’s Graces and Read to Succeed programs and the Chateau Girardeau Board of Directors. She is also past president of the Chateau Girardeau Foundation Board and the Community Counseling Center Governing Board.
Mr. Rediger was elected mayor of Cape Girardeau in April 2010. He is currently seeking reelection to a second four-year term in the April 8 general election. Mr. Rediger is retired from J.C. Penney after a 38-year career with the company. He holds a Bachelor of Arts from Nebraska Wesleyan University where he majored in business administration.
Mr. Rediger is past chairman of the Saint Francis Medical Center Board of Directors, past president and member of Cape West Rotary, and past chairman and member of the Cape Girardeau Chamber of Commerce. He is past chairman of the University Relations Committee of the Cape Chamber, and a member and past chair of the Chamber Greater Cape Committee. Mr. Rediger is a former member of the United Way Board of Directors, having served three times as campaign chair, a former member of the Cape Girardeau School Board and a former member and chairman of the American Red Cross Board of Directors. He is a past member of the Cape County Mental Health Board and the Vision 2000 Board. Mr. Rediger served 19 years on the Cape Girardeau Planning & Zoning Commission serving two terms as Chairman.
He has received a number of awards for his community service, including the Rush H. Limbaugh Community Service Award, the Southeast Missourian Spirit of America Award, the United Way Spirit of Giving Award, the Missouri Hospital Association Excellence in Governance Award and the Bell Volunteer Service Award.
The Redigers are members of Centenary United Methodist Church, where Mr. Rediger has served as Council, Finance and Staff-Parish chair. Mrs. Rediger is past president of United Methodist Women and has been active in Education Council and Mission committees.
The Redigers are the parents of Cindy Propst, Kathy Sedlacek, Dr. Doug Rediger and Michelle Burris. They also have seven grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.