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Alumni Showcase

Arlene Jacobs Wyche - Class of 1948

Arlene Jacobs Wyche

The Clarkston Education Foundation is proud to honor Arlene Jacobs Wyche, the Valedictorian of the Clarkston High School Class of 1948 in our Alumni Showcase Arlene has been influential in supporting the CEF Senior Scholarship program. She donated monies in 2009-2011 to provide additional Senior Scholarships. The recipients, Eric Goodwin, Jessica Ubachs, Tiffany Ho and Bryce James received scholarships to attend WSU, Gonzaga University and University of Washington. Arlene continues to donate to help seniors pay for the rising cost of a postsecondary education. The Board of Directors wishes to thank Arlene for her continued support and generosity in helping CEF fulfill its mission-to enhance and promote education in Clarkston schools.

Arlene lived in Clarkston from her 7th-12th grade years. She credits her Clarkston teachers and classes for her strong foundation not only during her college years, but also in her teaching work and other jobs. “Reading, Writing, and Thinking” became the basis for her life. Arlene was active in Band and Orchestra groups, International Club and Art Clubs while at CHS. Her love of music, art, travel, reading, etc. has been with Arlene throughout her life. She has had the privilege to travel in over 30 European countries, Canada, Mexico and all US states with family and friends.

One teacher in particular had a profound effect on Arlene in Clarkston. Mrs. Mae M. Burke taught Arlene English for her 7th, 8th and 9th grade years. Mrs. Burke had an uncanny ability to quiet and to interest a room full of rowdy daring-to-be-taught junior high students. Her daily pushing and pulling of ideas and thoughts, enforcing basic English mechanics and her love of literature provided Arlene with a firm foundation as well as confidence. Mrs. Burke left a huge impression on Arlene with her lessons on perseverance, literary appreciation and incentive to achieve. She wants to thank Mrs. Burke for helping her see beyond the valley to the wider world through literature and discussion.

Arlene went on to earn her BA from Washington State University and her Teaching Certificate and Master’s Degree at East Central State College in Oklahoma. Some of her jobs included working for KHG, Hanford Atomic Plant, University of New Mexico, and teaching 5th-8th grades in a rural Oklahoma school for 24 years. She particularly drew on her Clarkston experiences when teaching students to enjoy learning, to have fun reading, and writing stories, plays and poetry. In addition to teaching, Arlene also worked as a seasonal park ranger for 11 years in Platt National Park (currently known as Chickasaw National Recreation Area) in Oklahoma, was active as a 4-H leader, sponsored many activities such as art shows, music programs, science fairs, etc. In her professional organizations, she received several awards and honors.

Currently, Arlene resides in Florida in an over-55 community. She keeps busy taking care of homes and mail for some of the resident Snowbirds, and she also helps organize the park library of over 3,000 donated books. She loves having her own private library just a few hundred feet away. In addition, she helps out the elderly residents with many activities in the community club house, supports several local school programs, such as the Homeless Children and Youth program and Food-4-Kids which gives needy children backpacks filled with food for weekends and holidays. Arlene isn’t able to travel back to Clarkston anymore but has wonderful memories and pictures of her days here. 

Thanks Arlene for continuing to be involved with Clarkston students through your generous scholarship donations! Your generosity towards Clarkston youth is appreciated by the community and students! 


Rob Setlow

Rob Setlow was a K-12 student in the Clarkston schools and graduated from CHS in 1960. He was born in Lewiston but grew up on the family acreage out on 13th street (now called Setlow Court).

He rode the school bus to and from Whittier, Intermediate, Parkway, and Lincoln Jr. high schools, trying to stay on the good side of Mr. Poole, the memorable school bus driver on that route - he did remove students for disruptive behavior. Although, Rob does admit to a couple of long walks home for “small” infractions while attending the Intermediate School. For high school, Rob put a car together from the scrapped cars on the family acreage – he has fond memories of his surprisingly fast 1948 Hudson coupe that competed in more than a few short races across the Snake River Bridge.

After high school, Rob worked at various jobs (logging in Montana, farm hand in Pomeroy, “stuffing” and delivering the Sunday Lewiston Morning Tribune) for a year to accumulate enough money to start college. During the college years he worked at Potlatch during the summers until he entered the USAF in the fall of 1965. . He graduated from CWSC in Ellensburg with a degree in physics, a USAF 2nd lieutenant commission, and a keen interest for flying.

After two separate careers serving in the USAF and CIA, Rob retired and moved to Whidbey Island, WA in October 2002. Present activities include volunteer work as president of the local Lions International club, promoting youth rowing on Whidbey Island (www.islandrowing.org), promoting/supporting science education, amateur radio, fishing, and generally just enjoying activities he longed to do but missed during rewarding careers keeping us safe.

Rob married his high school sweetheart (Pat Freeman) in 1963. She helped “put hubby through” college and then met the challenges of being a Mom moving and raising two children, Darren and Michelle, around the world. Pat lost her long fight with an autoimmune disease in 1996. Darren and family live in Maine and Michelle lives nearby in Seattle. Rob married Kendra in 1997 and adopted her daughter, Liz, in 2000. She also lives nearby in Seattle. Rob’s last career assignment was in Norway, where Kendra and Liz enjoyed the adventures of international life and black passports. Upon Rob’s retirement from CIA in 2002, they moved to Whidbey Island and are considering a move to the Clarkston area, now a community he sees that is vastly different from the days he grew up.

Rob has become the family contact point for the Setlow Family Science Scholarship Fund administered by the Clarkston Education Foundation (CEF) (see www.ClarkstonEducationFoundation.org). During his initial visit to discuss the arrangement with CEF he was surprised to learn about the thriving Jr. USAF ROTC program at CHS. Since then, Rob (a distinguished ROTC College graduate) and his wife (grew up as a “military brat” in a USAF family), share their career and life experiences in the USAF with the ROTC class and the Lincoln Middle School students during the annual Career Fair in January.

Thanks Rob and Kendra for continuing to be involved with our students and the community!


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