René Steelman hasn’t lived in Tualatin for a decade, but that isn’t stopping her from helping local students.

The newly formed Steelman Family Foundation grants scholarship awards to students in the Tigard-Tualatin School District who are bound for college or a vocational training program.

Steelman has six children. Her oldest son was among the first students to graduate from Tualatin High School in the 1990s. Her youngest was born with severe disabilities and has cerebral palsy, rendering him wheelchair-bound and unable to speak.

But despite his disabilities, Steelman said, TJ was a valued member of the school community in Tualatin.

“Our youngest son went to Bridgeport Elementary (School) and went to Hazelbrook Middle School and then went to Tualatin High School,” Steelman said. “And he was very welcomed there and treated amazing.”

Steelman moved to Vancouver, Wash., about 10 years ago, but said she still feels compelled to give back to the community that supported her son.

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