Dianne Effinger, 80, of Wisconsin Dells, died Wednesday, May 10, 2023, at her home.
Dianne was born June 5, 1942, in Blair, the daughter of Ole and Amanda (Olsen) Solberg. She enjoyed growing up there, especially during her high school years as a cheerleader for the Blair Cardinals. Dianne entered college at UW-La Crosse knowing she wanted to teach. During her college summers, Dianne worked as a lifeguard at Wisconsin Dells City Pool, which started her lifelong love affair with the Dells area.
Upon graduation, she was so happy to be able to combine her love of educating with her love for the Dells when she began her 38-year educational career as a 7th grade English teacher with the Wisconsin Dells School District. Soon after that, Dianne found her niche teaching Freshman English at the high school, where she happily taught students for decades. Dianne eventually became the district-wide Librarian, transforming the traditional library into a modern computerized system. She continued her own personal education throughout her teaching years, receiving a Masters degree.
Not just limited to the classroom or the library, Dianne also loved interacting with her students and “Mrs. E”, as they called her, gladly assisted them in their extra-curricular activities. She was a Mat Maid for the school’s wrestling team, she coached Forensics, and was involved in the theater department. She even directed a number of high school plays, including the musical “Oklahoma”. Dianne had the heart of an educator and loved all facets of teaching. She loved helping her students blossom into young adults as her mantra was “Every child finds their way eventually”.
After retirement, Dianne joined the Library Board and remained on the board until her passing.
Dianne was instrumental in the planning and building of the new Kilbourne Public Library. She also represented Wisconsin Dells on the Wisconsin Regional Library Board for many years. In addition, she briefly came out of retirement to help modernize the Adams-Friendship library system. Dianne was extremely active in supporting the Dells community she loved so dearly. Not only was she involved in the library’s growth, she volunteered her time to the local Historical Society, and helped with local elections, plus assisted in animal rescue projects. She was a passionate animal advocate and contributed to the Columbia County Humane Society. She loved all animals, especially cats, and fostered many over the years.
Besides her passion for the Dells and cats, Dianne loved music and live concerts in particular. Throughout her life, she attended hundreds of concerts across the United States, including her favorites: Barry Manilow, Bon Jovi and Michael Bublé.
Everyone who knew Dianne will remember her kind, bright blue eyes and warm welcoming demeanor. Wherever she went in the Dells, she was recognized and appreciated.
Dianne is survived by her son, Jason (Regine “Charlie”) Effinger; brother, Wallace Solberg; grandchildren: Maxwell, Lillian, Mara and Anya; and many wonderful friends. She was preceded in death by her parents; sister, Beverly Galoff; and brother-in-law, Freeman Galoff.
A Celebration of Life Memorial Gathering will be held Friday, June 2, 2023, from 2:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m., in the community center of the Kilbourn Public Library.
In lieu of flowers, memorials of remembrance in her name can be given to the Kilbourne Public Library and the Columbia County Humane Society.
The Picha Funeral Home and Crematory of Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin, assisted the family with arrangements. For online condolences and information, go to www.pichafuneralhome.com; P: 608-253-7884.