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.