Gig Harbor Midday


We meet Tuesdays at 12:00 PM
Anthony's Homeport
8827 North Harborview Dr
Gig Harbor, WA  98332
United States of America

(202) 302-1574
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    Rotary Club of
    Gig Harbor Midday
    PO Box 611
    Gig Harbor, WA 98335
For more information about our club, please feel free to contact:
    Rick Offner
    Cell: 202-302-1574
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Home Page Stories
from Editor Don
Our program speaker this week was Melissa Moss of Tacoma's Nativity House, an affiliate of Catholic Community Services.
Nativity House provides a 167-bed shelter for homeless in our County and operates a 50-unit affordable housing complex, for formerly homeless folk who have graduated from the Shelter but are transitioning back into the community.  The range of services they provide is extremely broad and the work they are doing highly praiseworthy.  But most noteworthy was Melissa's description of how she got involved in this field, due to her own daughter's difficult history.  Her story was extremely moving.  Service above Self takes on a whole new meaning when we hear from someone as dedicated as she clearly is.  Midday Rotarians have taken up a collection of coats, hats and gloves for the shelter, which are the most pressing needs as colder weather impacts the homeless in our area. 
from the Ed...
The Club took a moment out today to congratulate Katy Cornell of Walk in the Light, and to present her with a check for $7000 toward their development of a new classroom in Burkina Faso.  As noted in the earlier story, Midday partnered with the Rotary Foundation District 5020 to provide this grant, which the organization was extremely pleased to receive.  Katy was packing her bags to leave for the project, but we were very happy that she could accept it in person! 
from Editor Don
Lacking a Membership Committee interviewer, our intrepid President took the mike in hand and conducted the Member Spotlight himself this week.  And his surprise choice for the limelight was Past President Marilyn Hoppen. 
Midday Rotarians know Marilyn well from her long years of Service with our Club.  But few probably know that she first joined Rotary because her Midday Rotarian husband Mark changed jobs, and therefore changed Clubs.  Marilyn didn't want to lose her long-standing connection to Midday so she joined our club herself, forming a Two-Rotarian Family.  And we have been the beneficiaries ever since.
Marilyn is a long-time Gig Harbor resident, and husband Mark grew up in the little brick house next the Gig Harbor Boatshop, so it's hard to imagine a couple more closely tied to our beautiful little city.  She holds down the Senior VP post of HR Director with Kitsap Bank, one of the oldest banks in our area and one of the few Woman Owned banks as well.  She was a most gracious surprise interviewee, and is certainly a most valuable member of Midday Rotary!  Thanks for sharing with us, Marilyn. 
from Editor Don
This week's speaker was Pamela Duncan from the Metropolitan Development Council in Tacoma and Pierce County.
The MDC is an area-wide community action agency, providing a variety of services to local folks in need.  It is one of over 1000 such agencies nationwide, which saw their roots in Lyndon Johnson's War on Poverty some 55 years ago.  These agencies basic goals are changing lives to make America a better place to live - and they are making important progress in doing just that.
Our local MDC provides services in the areas of Health, Housing, Education, Employment and Community Services, most of these across the entire County.  They run affordable housing units, provide student counseling and support, offer Adult educational assistance and operate an Employment opportunity center in addition to an in-patient de-toxification clinic.  The Club has started working on collecting bedding for that clinic, which Ms Duncan identified as an urgent need. 
This was an eye-opening presentation, which helped Midday Rotarians better understand the needs of our local community! 
from your Editor
President Rick announced this week a Community Service project in conjunction with GH Rotary to clear the inside area of the West Cloverleaf at Wolochet and Rt 16 (see photo).
The general mowing will have been done by tractor a day or so in advance.  Midday Rotarians should show up with rakes, shovels, clippers and weedwackers as available to help finish the job and make the area look great.
Saturday, October 19th at 9:00 AM.  Be there or be square! 
from President Rick
Honorary Rotarian Katy Cornell joined Midday Rotary on October 1 to provide an update on the District 5020 grant that will assist her organization, Walk In the Light, to establish a 10th grade classroom in Burkina Faso.
Joining Katy was Romeo Bamos from Burkina Faso who spoke about the challenges that
exist due to terrorist control of a large a territory in the Northern part of his country. The conditions are
very serious and there are now over 50,000 refugees in Burkina Faso. Many NGOs no longer support
services in the country. District 5020 will match $3,500 of Club funds to support the school.
from President Rick
Located in an RV parked outside the Northwest Detention Center in the Tide Flats of Tacoma, is the Advocates for Immigrants in Detention Northwest (AIDNW) post-detention Welcome Center. On Tuesday, October 1, AIDNW volunteer Betty Devereux provided a moving presentation on the history of the organization and their services. Established in 2005, AIDNW provides emotional support to immigrants in detention and support services when they are released from the Northwest Detention Center (now call the Northwest Immigrant Processing Center), a 1,575 bed, privately-run detention center operated on behalf of the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).
A major component of AIDNW’s services is the Welcome Center, where immigrants released from detention are connected to vital resources. Often immigrants who have been confined at the Northwest Detention Center are released with little or no notice into Tacoma’s Tide Flats. few resources or supports. Teams of volunteers staff the Welcome Center from 2-7 p.m.. Monday through Friday, to welcome released immigrants with caring support, letting them know they are valued and safe. The Welcome Center provides phones, arranges for transportation to the bus station, airport or taxi, and when needed, and provides temporary housing until more permanent arrangements are made.
While in detention, friends and family are often prevented from visiting these immigrants because of distance and transportation, confusing visitation schedule, language barriers, or fear. AIDNW provides phone cards so detainees can make phone calls to friends, family and advocates.
Some immigrants who have been released do not immediately leave Tacoma. These are people who have been granted asylum or been released on bond, and they may be eligible for various social and community services. AIDNW volunteers assist immigrant guests at their Hospitality House in accessing services by providing transportation to needed appointments. The Post Detention Accompaniment Network (P-DAN) includes volunteers who provide asylees staying in the Hospitality House with assistance with shopping, translation/interpretation, transportation to bus or airport, and connections to helping agencies.
Joining Betty to tell his story of being in the Northwest Detention Center was Ammar, an Iraqi citizen who worked with US troops during the Iraq War. Ammar immigrated to the US after the War. He was arrested in Seattle and detained for two years after failing to appear for an immigration hearing when the notice had been sent to the wrong address. He was finally “bonded” out of the Detention Center by the US Army Captain he worked with in Iraq and is being housed by AIDNW while he is working to get reestablished. With the assistance of AIDNW Ammar recently received his Commercial Driver’s License.
from Editor Don
This week we had a Banner Day for our local Funeral Home, Haven of Rest.  Our Rotarian Brie Smith brought her employer Haven of Rest into the Club as a Corporate Member.  Corporate Officers Jake Miller and Diego Patlan became Rotarians along with Brie, and the Club was very pleased to welcome them aboard.  
Brie then presented her Classification talk, revealing the interesting path she took to becoming a Funeral Director.  A Montanan by birth, Brie helper her Cosmetologist Mom working part-time at a local funeral home, and was attracted to the business that way.  She's had a very interesting career, moving all around the West before finally landing in the PACNW, meeting her husband and settling down here in Gig Harbor, where we're extremely happy to have her as a Midday Rotarian.  Following up on her talk, Brie, Diego and Jake then gave us a tag-team briefing on the history of Haven of Rest and some fascinating details about the Mortuary business.  It was a very interesting presentation, closely followed by every one of us - who all expect to need their services sooner or later! 
from Editor Don (with a photo assist from PP Dan)
Two Rotarians shared the spotlight this week.  Dr. Nathan Schlicher was in Cheri's interview chair (much to his surprise! - See what happens when you come to meetings, Doc?).  Nathan shared that he's been tied up pretty tightly with his periodical Board exams this Summer, which explains his scarcity of late.  He also revealed a number of details that many probably aren't aware of, including that he's been involved in Medicine (and intending to become a Physician) since he was 10 years old, because both of his parents were in the medical field.  And he's a dedicated Rotarian in part because his Dad was a Rotarian for 35 years!  Doc Nathan is happily married to a young lady who he met in Medical school no less, and they have three beautiful children.  I hesitate to reveal his hobby of running Triathlons, because he just returned from San Diego where he ran one with the Navy Seals in Coronado!  We're happy he survived the experience.  Not all do...
Your Editor Don Hutchins stood up next to accept his Paul Harris Fellow +3 award from District Foundation Chair Howard Svigals.  Don reached this level of Rotary Foundation recognition thru scheduled quarterly donations over a period of years.  He recommends that as the easiest and best way to be a Foundation Donor.  And Howard and President Rick reminded the membership that Midday is working to become an Every Member Every Year Club.  We are ALMOST there!  Do what Don does; set up a recurring donation each quarter.  You'll be glad you did! 
from Past Prez Dan
Member Spotlight – Carol Virak
Carol is a long-term member of Midday and a well known artist.  She became interested in art as a child, watching her cousin draw.  Finding that she had a talent for art, she pursued it and received a scholarship to an art school, and majored in art at college.  She gained a Masters degree in Sculpture at UPS.  Carol has taught art and was a member of the Tacoma Art Commission.  She was a member of the panel responsible for selecting the design of the Tacoma dome roof.  A great Rotarian, we are fortunate to have Carol as a member of the club.
from Past Prez Dan
Julie Richards - Classification Talk and the YMCA
Julie was born in Portland, grew up in Vancouver, and eventually found her way to Gig Harbor.  She attended Washington State, majoring in nursing…until cadaver day convinced her that majoring in communications would be a better choice!
She worked for the American Cancer Society, the Seahawks, and eventually returned to Gig Harbor where she is now director of Philanthropy for the YMCA.  Married with a young son, Julie enjoys the outdoors, golfing, travel and craft beer.  We are really fortunate to have Julie as a member of the Midday club.
After her Classification talk, Julie briefed us on what is happening at the YMCA.  The worldwide YMCA had its start in England in 1844 as a safe place for young men to stay.  The Y is currently found in 120 countries around the world.  And no, the YMCA was NOT a fan of the Village People and their song, “YMCA.”  Interesting trivia, the YMCA invented four sports: volleyball, racket ball, basketball, and body building.
Our local Y currently has over 20,000 members, with several Rotarians part of that membership.  Two Midday Rotarians were charter members of the Gig Harbor Y.  The YMCA of Pierce county is the largest non-profit in the area, and is planning expansion around the existing Gig Harbor location.  Sports fields for baseball, soccer, and other outdoor activities are planned in the hopefully near future.
The local Y has a program with the Peninsula School District to teach every second grade student water safety and swimming.  The Rotary Clubs of Pierce County are planning to partner with the Pierce County YMCA to work on improving health in six health “deserts” in Pierce County.
from Editor Don
Our featured speaker at this week's meeting was Cynthia Ricks-Maccotan of CHI Franciscan Health Care's Youth Violence Prevention Initiative.
Cynthia's dynamic and very informative presentation opened the eyes of many of our Rotarians, who were largely unaware of a number of factors leading to violence in Peninsula Schools.  She discussed the underlying causes of these issues (known in the field as ACEs) and the progress being made through CHI's program, in partnership with MANY other local organizations. 
This was an upbeat and positive discussion of a very important problem, and the Club will be better equipped to serve our community with this information on hand. 
from Editor Don
This week's member spotlight was focused on Rotarian Scott Bush, with Rotarian Cheri Johnson in the interviewer's seat.
Scott's answers to Cheri's questions were enlightening and sometimes surprising.  Scott has been a GH Midday Rotarian for years, but his history here in Gig Harbor goes back to the early 1980's when his family first arrived in the area.  Scott revealed a long history as an avid poker player and football fan (starting with seats in the King Dome, for those with similarly long memories here) in addition to his better known work with our Club as an active supporter of our annual fund-raisers, and "host" of our huge stash of materials for Golfaritaville.  Thanks for this insight into an important GH Rotarian's background, Cheri and Scott! 
from your Editor Don and Prez Rick
On June 27th at the GH Yacht Club, outgoing President Dan Wilson honored Midday Rotarians who have served notably during his tenure, then turned over the "wheel" of Gig Harbor Midday Rotary to our incoming President, Rick Offner.
Rick and his wife Julie retired and moved to Gig Harbor in 2013, from the Washington DC area. This move was to be close to their son, Jared and his wife Erin, and the expectation of grand-kids. They now are proud grandparents to Hudson, age 5, and Jordan, age 3. Rick also has a daughter, Megan, who lives in Upstate New York. He joined Rotary and our Gig Harbor Midday Club in 2016. 
Rick has a Masters degree in school psychology and a Ph.D. in rehabilitation psychology from the University of Wisconsin. He has over 40 years’ experience as a clinician, researcher, manager, and consultant. 
Professionally, he has managed complex organizations, working extensively with local, state, national, and international government agencies, universities, and nonprofit organizations. He has been a board member and officer of numerous local, state and national non-profit organizations and professional associations. 
Rick served as a school psychologist in rural south-central Wisconsin. He was a research professor on the faculty of the University of Montana, where he directed the Rural Institute on Disability and established a public policy research center for government studies. He was a senior executive managing a diverse consulting practice in Washington DC, where he worked with Federal agencies in public health, mental health, substance abuse, education and housing to strategically plan, manage and evaluate Federal programs.
Since moving to Gig Harbor, Rick has been elected President of his HOA. He served two terms as a Gig Harbor Parks Commissioner, and a member of the GH Transportation Planning Steering Committee. Rick and Julie also have a boat and are members of the GH Yacht Club. In his spare time, Rick enjoys playing his guitar, and walking in the Harbor. 
Midday Rotary is excited to have a Rotarian of Rick's education and experience at the helm of our Club, and very much look forward to his tenure as our President. 
Welcome aboard, President Rick!
World Polio Day - October 24
Oct 22, 2019
Rotary's Work to Eliminate Polio
Rick Offner
Oct 22, 2019
Club Assembly 2019-2020 Projects and Membership "Quadfathers"
5th Tuesday
Oct 29, 2019
No Meeting Today - Club Social
Jane Duea
Nov 05, 2019
Girls on the Run
Howard Svigals
Nov 12, 2019
Rotary Foundation Month - The Rotary Foundation
Rep. Jesse Young
Nov 19, 2019
Olympia Legislative Update
Luellen Lucid
Dec 03, 2019
Russia Rotary Exchange September 2019
Hendrson Bay Interact
Dec 10, 2019
Meeting at Henderson Bay
Merry Christmas!
Dec 24, 2019
No Meeting Today
Happy New Year!
Dec 31, 2019
No Meeting Today
5th Tuesday Social
Mar 31, 2020

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