Joe Rohleder named winner of German Heritage Award 2022; essay winners announced

Judy and Joe Rohleder

The Jasper DeutscherVerein, Sister Cities of Jasper, Inc. and the Jasper Partnership Commission sponsored a German-American dinner and program on Thursday, October 6, 2022 at KlubHaus61 in Jasper.

Mrs. Sandy Wehr, Vice President of Sister Cities of Jasper, Inc. presented the 24th Annual German Heritage Award to Joe Rohleder for his many contributions to the historic preservation of Jasper and the county.

This award is given to an individual or group who has generously dedicated their time, talents, or resources to maintaining, improving, or consolidating German roots in Dubois County. Sister Cities of Jasper and the Jasper Partnership Commission established the award in 1999 and the Jasper DeutscherVerein sponsors the award.

Ms. Wehr noted that “Joe’s influence is evident not only in historical work but also in the academic field. From the classroom to the football team to wrestling teams to working with other teachers, everyone will tell you what a positive influence Joe has had in their lives.

And his wife, Judy, has worked alongside him over the years. Together, they have carried out many projects.

Here are some comments from letters of appointment submitted on his behalf.

“I remember Joe making an impassioned plea at a school board meeting to save the gymnasium, saying it could still serve our students and our community for years to come. Joe also had the foresight to bring a representative from Indiana Landmarks to the meeting.

“Check out the Schaeffer barn, the Alexander School building and the herb garden near River Walk. All have the Joe Rohleder touch added to them. Joe had the foresight to add modern technology to the Alexander School building for presentations. »

“Working with the Dubois County Stone Carvers, he and others were able to place a landmark in the parks for the missing Forest Grove Cemetery.”

“Coach Rohleder was never satisfied with you doing something partially right, he wanted it done right every time. He demanded the best. He works hard and does everything he can.

In addition to naming Mr. Rohleder the recipient of the annual award, the winners of the essay contest were also announced. The German-American sponsored competition featuring essays submitted by local students on the theme of “My ideal trip to Germany”.

The essay contest winners were Mollie Birchler of Southridge High School, Ty Verkamp of Northeast Dubois Jr./Sr. High School and Sara Hamilton of Forest Park Jr. Sr. High School.

More information on German heritage can be found at

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