I have been a Director of Nurses for Long Term Care Facilities for 38 years. I worked for 25 years for the Adventist Health System. I am presently working as Director of Nurses for Lake Country Health and Rehabilitation Center in Occonomowoc, Wisconsin. I am married to Bob Skilton and we have two wonderful children, Rebecca Skilton Kelly, class of ‘97, and Richard Skilton, class of ‘98. We also have two very wonderful grandchildren; Lydia, who is in 3rd grade at Peterson, and Dylan, who is in kindergarten.
Darlene and I met our sophomore year at WA (with the help of Mr. Sigler’s English class). We graduated in 1973 and were married in 1974. I worked for 12 years in the wholesale greenhouse industry as a driver/salesman. During the next 20 years, we farmed and raised our 3 sons. I served as a director, vice president, and president for various agriculture organizations. I helped in the planning and implanting of local, statewide and national ad campaigns. I also worked numerous trade shows. My responsibilities included booking, laying out the design for the vender booths, as well as manning the finished booths. I also emceed the banquet events.
I’m currently back working the wholesale greenhouse business in sales and fundraiser events covering Wisconsin, the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, and northern Illinois.
Lessons that I learned while attending WA gave me the confidence to go out and succeed in life. Not every endeavor will be successful but the lessons that you learn from mistakes help to make you a better person. Giving oral book reports in front of class gave me skills that I use to this day when I teach a Sabbath School class or preach in the local churches.
The life-changing lessons we learned at WA help others to see Jesus Christ in us.
It has been said that the 3 most important aspects of marketing are location, location, location. Here in Wisconsin we have the location: it’s Wisconsin Academy in Columbus Wisconsin! Now we need to market it as if time on this earth were running out.
What the Academy did for me: WA allowed me to complete my high school years in a safe and nurturing environment. I loved the teachers and activities, plus made life-long friends that I still cherish to this day. It also cemented my relationship with God.
Family/Career: I have 3 grown kids and one granddaughter who makes my day. My husband and I have been married 33 years and he also has come to know and love Alumni Weekend and getting together with my friends. I currently work at UW Hospital in Madison as a health unit coordinator on a trauma/IMC floor.
Alumni benefitting the school: The Alumni are WA’s greatest asset. We each know what the academy has done for us in our own lives and we can be a great resource/reference for current students. Not only can we help financially, but also through providing guidance and support for the young people. We’re a great resource for a career day!!
Aaron Berger, 42, Graduated from Wisconsin Academy in 1989. He attended Southern College for 3 years and later graduated with an AS from Hagerstown Junior College while working at the Review & Harold Publishing. He now works at Berger & King Inc. and lives in Wilson, Michigan, with his wife and three children.
Marty Castleberg, ’71
I come from a family of 12 children, 8 boys and 4 girls and have lived in Wisconsin all my life. I have 3 children of my own, Marty, Michelle, and Ashley. I attended WA from 1969 to1971, during the school years and during the summers. When I graduated I did not have a school bill.
There was a Castleberg at WA for 17 straight years, and then the younger generation of Castleberg’s showed up for another 10 years. So we have a good ideal how WA works. I have never missed an Alumni weekend since I graduated; 42 years and running.
What can we gave back to the WA to help? Self help, financial help, encourage students we know to attend, maybe sponsor them? Also, I understand the lease on the farm land is due to be renewed. I understand they could maybe get another $50 to $100 an acre, which could mean another $50,000.00 to help the school.
Heather Rosen, ’98
I proudly graduated from Wisconsin Academy with the class of 1998. I can honestly say my years at WA hold some of my best memories. I absolutely loved being involved in the many goings on. I feel strongly that it was an incredibly important piece of my education for me to me to be nurtured in a spiritual environment where the staff and students were spiritually supportive of each other. Not only do I wish the fun and good times for current and future students of WA, but I pray that through their time at WA, they will have the opportunity to see, hear and talk about what Jesus is doing in as many ways as possible with the staff and fellow students. As an alumna, I am unable to be there and do those things myself, so I count it a privilege to support those people who are able to be present for each student. I see alumni assisting WA in three distinct ways. Being present prayerfully, having the privilege of regularly bringing staff and students before the God we serve; being present and supportive of the goings on at the academy or the events that the students have around the state; and thirdly, being present financially, which includes being supportive of students or the academy as a whole.
I enjoy hiking and being active in my community with my two dogs. I very much enjoy my job as a social worker in a long term care facility.
I absolutely treasure my time spent at the academy and very much appreciate those who were supportive in the past, so I could be there. I hope to be supportive in ways that enable others to have a similar experience.