Dr. Lois Parnell Frels, of Moline and rural Hillsdale, has received the Mansfield Award from Iowa Wesleyan University in Mount Pleasant for her community contributions and outstanding lifetime achievements.
Frels was the first director of the university’s nursing program that was established 43 years ago. Her first graduating class in 1975 had a perfect pass rate on the Iowa State Board examinations, earning the program national accreditation.
She is professor emeritus at Bradley University in Peoria, where she received the Mergan Award. She was honored as a Fellow of the American School Health Association and was one of five founders of the Illinois School Health Association.
In 2005, she was inducted into the Hall of Fame at United Township High School and in 2007 the Rock Island Republican Central Committee began naming their yearly award to young female Republicans after her.
Frels was the first woman elected to the Riverdale School Board and is a charter member of the Riverdale Education Foundation. She served two terms as president of the Illinios Federation of Republican Women.
She also served on the board of the National Federation of Republican Women, was on a National Reforming Health Care committee and the Illinois Health Care Cost Containment committee and for six years chaired the Illinois Committee on Nursing.