Franklin H. Shavlik

Frank was born on May 6, 1935 in Denver, Colorado where he attended Denver Public Schools, graduating in 1953 from South High School. After he took a year off to go to the Bahamas to be in a film on sharks, he graduated from Columbia University in 1958.

Frank served in the National Guard after college and sold insurance until he became Executive Director of The Voice of Youth, a nonprofit organization that encouraged young people to engage in public affairs with a focus on public service as a career choice. He encouraged and guided them in the public opinion pieces they wrote weekly for The Denver Post. They also had a weekly television program where they interviewed outstanding public servants who visited the Denver area. In 1961, he married Donna Lee Younger and they lived on the campus of Colorado Woman’s College in Denver, where Donna was Director of Activities for the College.

After four years, they moved to Lawrence, Kansas where they served as residence hall directors at the University of Kansas (KU), while working on graduate degrees. Frank, then, worked with the Student Union, and subsequently became Assistant Dean of Men. This was the time of deep social change nationwide in dealing with campus responses to racial awareness on campus and in Lawrence, social unrest due to the Viet Nam War, women’s rights, and gender identity. He and Donna, then Assistant Dean of Women worked with the student activists on campus. In 1970 they left KU, lived in their Winnebago, and did consulting and workshops on student leadership for colleagues around the country.

They moved to Newark, Delaware and Frank was recruited for a position as Director of Training for the National Drug Abuse Training Center (NDATC) in The District of Columbia. This required a move closer to DC and the Shavlik’s moved to Garrett Park Maryland in 1973. Frank completed his PhD in 1975 in Education/School Psychology and Guidance/Counseling from the University of Kansas.

After completing his work at the NDATC, Frank was attracted to an ad for the Executive Director of People’s Place located in Milford, Delaware. Now there were two households to care for and lots of commuting back and forth between Delaware and Maryland.

Over the next 20 years, Frank was able to develop and grow People’s Place into a full-service community mental health agency serving the lower two counties of Delaware. Services included individual counseling, halfway housing for young people coming out of foster care, home for veterans (The Home of the Brave), the first safe house (in Delaware) for victims of sexual abuse, and transition housing for the victims as well. The Agency has expanded to meet current needs and now serves people of all three Delaware counties.

In 1998, the Shavlik’s returned home to Colorado and settled in Estes Park. Frank immediately became involved in the community by serving on the then Larimer

County Mental Health Committee, by working on the team of folks who ran the Farmer’s Market, and by helping out the victims of the Storm Mountain Fire. After meeting many wonderful advocates from the community, Frank worked with many of them to start the Estes Park Non-Profit Resource Center, The Restorative Justice Program, and a Safe House for the Estes Valley Victim Advocates (now Crisis Advocates). He also was a longtime board member of the Community Foundation of Northern Colorado, Estes Community Fund. He was privileged to work with a special partner though the Partners Program. Finally, he was on two HOA Boards.

Frank leaves behind his wife of nearly 60 years, Donna, a sister, Donna Wyman of Parker, Colorado and her children—David Madison, Mark Madison, Lauri Demel, Daryle Wyman and their special families. He and Donna also have four godchildren, Katie Touchton-Leondard Kasim, Kimberly Shannon Bowers Wilson, Sarah Grace Bowers Ryden and Devon Bowers and their special families as well. They also have one unofficial “foster” kid—Robert Colomaio.

Frank lived his life in service of others. His compassion for those folks, particularly kids, who were, for one reason or another, not making it in society was a hallmark of his life’s work at People’s Place. He often went beyond what the agency could do. An illustration of this is that one time the Chief of Police of Milford was called about a kid, who stole the Communion bread from a church. The Chief clearly did not wish to put the kid in jail, so he asked Frank to help. Frank immediately said I will take care of the situation, and he did. He and Donna also are honorary grandparents to the special grandchildren of Frank’s best friend since kindergarten, Jim Peiker. The parents are Missy and Louie Feher Peiker, and the children are Louie J. Feher Peiker, Charlie Feher Peiker and Max Feher Peiker. There are many similar stories that could fill a book, but that is not appropriate here, so in closing--The world is a better place because Frank has been a part of it for 85 years. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations to The Estes Park Non-Profit Resource Center (EPNPRC), The Estes Park Learning Place, The Community Foundation of Northern Colorado-the Estes Community Fund or a charity of the donor’s choice all in care of Allnutt Funeral Service 1302 Graves Avenue Estes Park, CO 80517. See www.allnuttestespark.com.

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