WSU President to Honor Ephrata Resident Ferne Daniel as WSU Benefactor

EDITORS: Media can reach Ferne Daniel through attorney Richard Lemargie at 509/754-2493.

WSU President to Honor Ephrata Resident Ferne Daniel as WSU Benefactor

EPHRATA, Wash. — Washington State University President V. Lane Rawlins will present a plaque in person Aug. 9 to Ephrata resident Ferne Daniel, recognizing her as a WSU Benefactor for her gifts of farmland.

Benefactors are honored at the WSU Foundation annual meeting in the fall. Because of health considerations, Daniel cannot attend this fall’s dinner.

Income from the sale and lease of separate parcels of farmland near Ephrata and Coulee City will establish the Daniel Family Endowment Fund in the College of Agriculture and Home Economics. The fund will support wheat-breeding efforts at the university as well as research conducted through WSU’s Center for Precision Agricultural Systems. Precision agriculture is the management of small areas of large fields based on intensive information collected by satellites, computers and other technologies.

“As a teacher, Fern is deeply committed to education,” said Richard Lemargie, her attorney in Ephrata. “As a longtime wheat grower, her main concern is the ongoing struggle of the dryland wheat farmer. She is making this gift to WSU on behalf of her parents and herself.”

Daniel is the daughter of William and Fairrie Pack Daniel, who migrated from Kentucky and settled in the Sheep Canyon region near Ephrata in the early 20th century. There they established a dryland wheat farming operation and raised cattle.

Daniel attended school in Ephrata and later Whitworth College in Spokane and Central Washington College in Ellensburg, where she earned teaching credentials. She taught in Wenatchee from 1944-46 before taking a job in the Ephrata school system, where she taught at the elementary level from 1946-58. She also served as librarian for the school district the first five years.

She did full-time and substitute teaching from 1958-70. Throughout her career and during retirement, she also managed various business properties.