Kim Echlin was one of the first volunteers and supporters of the Loran Scholars Foundation. A founding trustee, her family made crucial donations in the early years before the foundation developed its track record of long-term impact and success.
Ms. Echlin has traveled and lived throughout the world and is the author of several novels, including Elephant Winter, Dagmar’s Daughter, and The Disappeared. Her most recent novel, Under The Visible Life, came out in 2015 and was named one of the most anticipated books of the year. Kim also teaches and produces television documentaries.
Founder Robert Cluett recruited Ms. Echlin to the cause while she was completing her PhD, which focused on the translation of Ojibwe trickster stories. In addition to serving on our board of directors for 13 years, Ms. Echlin has interviewed candidates at the regional and national levels. “The interview process brings together people with common values and fosters an enduring commitment to service and community. We hope that our interviews inspire scholars to believe in themselves, and to follow their passions,” she says. Ms. Echlin has also experienced and witnessed the effects of the interview process on both candidates and interviewers. “These young people inspire me with their idealism and their desire to achieve and serve. Their energy and hope is fully woven into my own work and life.”
Ms. Echlin values mentoring Loran Scholars and facilitating summer internships, both essential aspects of the scholarship. She currently mentors a Loran Scholar at the University of Toronto. “Our hope is that students continue to open themselves to growth, whether in the classroom, or in travel or in different workplaces.”
“I am as moved each successive year as I was in 1990 to hear students describe how the scholarship has inspired them to try new studies and new venues of service in their communities.”