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Delray Beach, FL
Born in Reinbeck, IA, Gordon Cawelti graduated from Toledo High School. He graduated from UNI, served in the Army, got a MA from University of N. CO/Greeley, served as principals of both Lytton and Spirit Lake High Schools, then received a PhD from University of Iowa. He married Diana Wills, and they had one child, Kim. They moved to Chicago where he was Executive Director of the North Central Assoc. for seven years. From there, they moved to Tulsa in 1969 where he was superintendent of schools during desegregation. Next was Washington, DC where he was Executive Director for ASCD which had 10,000 members when he arrived and 150,000 members when he retired in 1992. He married Dodie Hubbell in 1977. Cawelti earned a reputation for his study of 6k innovative high schools, and later studied low income, high-achieving school districts. After he became ill, a website was established where many former students and employees praised how he encouraged and helped them. Upon retirement, he became a "snowbird" with summers in IA and winters in FL. His hobbies included travel, golf and boating. He is survived by his wife, Dodie, three children, Kim, Tasha and Darrin, and eight grandchildren. In lieu of flowers, a scholarship fund has been set up in his name at the school district in Iowa where he was principal. Please send donations made payable to: Gordon Cawelti Memorial Scholarship, c/o D. Cawelti 3241 N. Glen Creek Drive, Tucson, Arizona 85712.
Published in Des Moines Register on Apr. 14, 2013