Established on 01.04.2021 by Dr. Loren ’67 and MaryAnn Waalen ’80 Anderson
Donald Ray Waalen was a beloved husband, father, grandfather, and great-grandfather. Don was born on April 17, 1929, in Alden Township to parents Nels and Tena (Christensen) Waalen. He grew up on a farm along the Apple River as the fifth of six children. He graduated from Amery High School in 1947 and started a career as a cheesemaker for Wanderoos Cheese Factory.
Don was married to June Foss of Nye, WI, in June 1951. He was drafted by the United States Army in 1953, where he spent time in the occupational forces in Japan. Following his time in the US Army, Don studied at the University of Wisconsin – River Falls and received his B.S. in 1959 in physics and mathematics.
In 1963, Don and June settled in Hudson, WI, where they raised three Cobber daughters, MaryAnn Anderson ‘80, Dr. Jill Waalen ‘84, and Karen Breitnauer ‘92. Don spent much of his career in the real estate development business, first with Jandric Construction and then Andrews Allen Company, both in St. Paul, MN. Later he owned his own business, Winona Hospitality Corporation, and sold real estate part-time for Century 21 in Hudson.
Don and June were active members of Bethel Lutheran Church in Hudson, the Hudson Boosters, and Hudson Band Backers. Don also served on the City of Hudson Planning Commission and as a Hudson City Council member. A baseball player himself as a catcher for the Army’s Black Knights in Japan and the Amery Flyers in the 1950s, Don was an avid sports fan, taking in countless Hudson Raider, Green Bay Packer, Wisconsin Badger, and Milwaukee Brewer games over the years with his wife June, family and friends. Don and June loved to travel to visit their daughters and families and also enjoyed trips to Europe and especially Norway. Don was proud of his Norwegian heritage and had a particular passion for lutefisk.
The purpose of this endowed scholarship is to honor the memory of Donald Ray Waalen and provide encouragement to students who desire a Concordia education. The Donald R. Waalen Endowed Scholarship is awarded by the Office of Financial Aid to one or more students majoring or minoring in business administration, with preference given to students from a rural area.