LRHSD BOE honors retirement of long-time board member, holds moment of silence for Casey Lohne

The board honored retiring member Linda M. Eckenhoff and held a moment of silence for the second consecutive meeting for a student's passing.

LRHSD Board member Dr. Robert “Skip” Bende and board President Margaret ‘Cookie’ Estlow, right, honor retiring member Linda Eckenhoff during the July 17 BOE meeting at the District Administration Building in Shamong.. – Photo courtesy of LRHSD

During the latest Lenape Regional High School District Board of Education meeting, the board honored retiring member Linda M. Eckenhoff after her 13 years of service. She served the board as a representative from Southampton since May of 2006. 

“I have had a rewarding experience as a board member, mainly because my colleagues on the board, the district administrators and the teachers and support staff are all working for the right reasons,” said Eckenhoff in a press release from the district. “They are focused on providing the best possible education for both current students and future generations.”

Over her 17-year teaching career, she taught grades first through eighth in both Edgewater Park and Southampton schools. She left the profession to help her husband, Ted, manage their 280-acre family farm, which she also did for 17 years, according to the release. 

Before her time on the board, Eckenhoff’s two sons, John Sullivan Jr. and Kevin Sullivan, and her stepsons, Scott Eckenhoff and Glenn Eckenhoff, all attended Lenape High School. However, according to the release, she has served while all five of Glenn’s children attended Lenape High School: Brian Eckenhoff, ’08; Kevin Eckenhoff, ’10; Justin Eckenhoff, ’16; Lauren Eckenhoff, ’16; and Colin Eckenhoff, ’18. 

“Signing the diplomas of my grandchildren was very special,” said Eckenhoff.

Superintendent Carol Birnbohm shared her gratitude for Eckenhoff’s support of the district over the past 13 years during the meeting. 

“We are fortunate to have had Linda on our board of education because she is an educator at heart. She is sincere in wanting what is best for our students, first and foremost,” said Birnbohm. “We will miss her energy and enthusiasm, but above all, we will miss her commitment to our students.”

Also during the meeting, BOE President Margaret Estlow read a resolution to recognize Eckenhoff’s service to the board and presented her with a plaque and a memory book. 

“Linda has been thoughtful and generous with the time that she’s dedicated to the board,” said Estlow. “She knows how to engage others with that sweet smile and Southern charm. Her years of service have made an enormous impact on our district.”

According to the district, Eckenhoff has a history of service to Southern New Jersey in addition to her time on the LRHSD board. She was appointed by Gov. Whitman to a four-year term on the Pinelands Commission, and she helped start the Southampton Township Academic Resources, an education commission to help provide grants and other resources for the Southampton Township School District. Her husband, Ted, also has a history of service, spending more than 30 years on the Virtua Board of Trustees.

The couple will soon head to Southport, N.C., – close to where she grew up in Durham – to begin retirement. Once settled, the couple plans to resume world travels in between enjoying coastal living, said the district. 

In other news:

  • The board and administrators held a moment of silence for Shawnee High School Class of 2019 graduate Casey Lohne after he succumbed to a fatal car accident on July 5. This marks the second consecutive meeting in which the board held a moment of silence after a student died from a motor vehicle accident. Last meeting, they held a moment of silence for another Shawnee High School Class of 2019 graduate, Daniel McDowell, who passed away June 24 from a dirt bike accident in Pennsylvania.