Student sponsored runs benefit scholarship fund for child of deceased alumnus

Nov. 2, 2011
Contact Information:

Jill M. Motschenbacher, Graduate Research Assistant
Department of Crop, Soil and Environmental Sciences

Howell Medders, Division of Agriculture Communications
479-575-5647 /

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5K runners

RUNNING FOR EMILY -- Donors and 196 runners in the Crop, Soil and Environmental Sciences Graduate Student Association “Down & Dirty 5K and Clean & Green 1 Miler” Saturday provided more than $4,000 for the Emily Grace Stiegler scholarship fund.

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — The “Down & Dirty 5K and Clean & Green 1-Miler” races sponsored by the Crop, Soil and Environmental Sciences Graduate Student Association raised nearly $4,000 for a scholarship fund for the daughter of a recent University of Arkansas doctoral degree recipient who died In an automobile accident last December.

Proceeds from the event on Saturday, Oct. 29, at the Arkansas Agricultural Research and Extension Center went to the Emily Grace Stiegler scholarship fund. Emily Grace is the 1-year old daughter of the late Chris and Jenny Stiegler. The couple died in a car accident on Christmas Eve 2010. Their daughter was injured and is on the way to a full recovery. Joe and Cecelia Hubbard, whose pickup crossed the centerline and collided with the Stiegler’s car, according to authorities, also died. The accident was near Thornton, Texas.

Jill Motschenbacher, who organized the runs along with her fiancé, Jason Auer, a 2011 Law School graduate, said, “I’m a Ph. D. student and I hope somebody would do something like this for me if that kind of thing happened to us.”

“Everybody was really pleased to donate this year’s proceeds to Emily’s scholarship fund,” Motschenbacher said. The proceeds of the first event, in 2010, which she organized, were used for CSES Graduate Student Association activities.

The proceeds were from fees paid by 196 runners and additional donations.

Chris Stiegler, 35, received his doctorate in plant science in May 2010. He had just completed his first semester last December as a soil and crop science faculty member at Texas A&M University. His academic emphasis was in turf science, which is a horticulture department program. The UA departments of horticulture and crop, soil and environmental sciences are both in Dale Bumpers College of Agricultural, Food and Life Sciences.

Jenny Stiegler was a manager at Bath & Body Works in Fayetteville for several years prior to the family’s relocation to Texas. The store helped sponsor the races. Other volunteers included University of Arkansas ROTC cadets and students participating in the national Make A Difference Day service activity.

First, second and third place winners, respectively, in each category were:

5K, female -- Maggie Pickhardt, Lauren Shoup and Cyd King.

5K, male -- Alex McClary, Casey Kleinhenz and Robbie Fitzwater.

1M, female -- Lauren Shoup, Madeline Powers and Sigita Buysse.

1M, male -- Bob Buysse, Jackson Branat and Kristofor Brye.

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