Sonja Olshove Memorial Fund


September, 2016           

Sonja Olshove Memorial Fund

Sonja Kristen Olshove
July 5, 1967 – September 4, 2016

The Traverse City Central, Class of 1985, has initiated a memorial fund at PEACE Ranch to commemorate their friend and classmate Sonja Olshove.

“Sonya was a tenderhearted, warm and generous person who left a lasting impression of kindness compassion on everyone she met. She was a wonderful wife to Keith and wonderful mom to Kiersten and her step-children Jade and Jared. She loved them with all her heart and it showed every day. Sonja sits alongside Jesus now and we will miss her immensely.

Sonja received her A.A. degree from NMC in 1987, her B.A. from MSU in 1989, and received her Master’s Degree in social psychology from Wake Forest University in 1991. She followed in her dad’s footsteps and taught at NMC for 25 years. She had a passion for teaching and loved her students and her colleagues. Sonja won the Imogene Wise Faculty Excellence award in 2001 and 2013.  Recipients are chosen by a student selection committee, award criteria includes teaching excellence, rapport with students, innovation in the classroom and a sense of dedication.”

As a master in teaching innovation, Sonja appreciated the impact of equine assisted psychotherapy and learning.  She pursued opportunities for her NMC students to engage in equine assisted learning, attended Hug & Groom, and her daughter Kiersten took part in NMC’s College for Kids at PEACE Ranch.

PEACE Ranch is a non-profit organization founded to provide Professional Equine Assisted Counseling and Educational services for all who are struggling and has pioneered the clinical, experiential, EAGALA Model in the Grand Traverse region.  This model is used worldwide as an effective intervention is especially helpful for people who experience traumatic circumstances. All services at PEACE Ranch are provided by licensed professionals and hundreds of hours of therapy are donated each year for children in crisis and Veterans.  The donation of PEACE services are made possible through private donors, business sponsorship, fundraising efforts, and scholarships.

In memory of their friend, classmate, and colleague, the TCC Class of 85 has initiated a fund with seed monies of $2000 to provide:

  • An opportunity for Kiersten Olshove to access any and all PEACE Ranch services as a means of learning, growth, and healing.
  • An opportunity for Kiersten Olshove to become a PEACE Horse Sponsor

Their desire is that their seed grow and continue to honor all Sonja believed both professionally and personally for many years. For this purpose, friends, family, and community members are invited to donate to the Sonja Olshove Memorial Fund which has been established to:

  • Provide Equine Assisted Counseling for children processing grief after the loss of a loved one
  • Provide Equine Assisted Learning opportunities for NMC classes.

Contributions to the Sonja Olshove Memorial Fund can be made by check to:


2570 Hoosier Valley Rd.

Traverse City, MI  49685

Via PayPal:  or through the website

PEACE Ranch is a legal outreach of Paraklesis Inc., a 501c3 charitable organization.  Annual income and expenditures will be listed on the Paraklesis Inc. 501c3 990, and semiannually to the TCC fund founders and the Olshove family.

This effort has been approved by the Olshove Family.  For more informationIMG_0518:


Jacquelyn Kaschel

PEACE Ranch Executive Director






One thought on “Sonja Olshove Memorial Fund

  1. I have talked with many people, mostly students of Sonja and have heard nothing but wonderful comments. How she accepted each and every one on an equal basis, plus she would advise them as a mother would to her children. Not criticize, but listen to them and give them an incite as to what she felt would be the best for them. I have watched and listen to them, some with tears in their eyes as they remembered her and her wonderful being. My only regret is I never had the pleasure of meeting her in person. May she rest in peace. Erwin P. Sporte

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