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MEET THE FINALISTS FOR COMMUNITY AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT DIRECTOR

Tacoma residents, community members and stakeholders will have the opportunity to welcome the City of Tacoma’s four Community and Economic Development director finalists during a meet and greet forum and community reception on Monday, April 30 from 5:30-7 p.m., at The Evergreen State College Tacoma Campus Lyceum Hall (1210 6th Ave.).

The four finalists seeking to become Tacoma’s next Community and Economic Development director are: Betty Nokes Capestany, currently serving as president and CEO for Bellevue Chamber of Commerce; Kurt Creager, currently serving as president for Urbanist Housing Solutions LLC, in Vancouver, Wash.; Chris Green, currently serving as assistant director of Washington State Department of Commerce in Olympia; and Lance Randall, currently serving as director of economic development for Southeast Effective Development (SEED) in Seattle.

Questions regarding the City of Tacoma’s Community and Economic Development director recruitment and selection process can be directed to Kat Flores in the City’s Human Resources Department at kflores@cityoftacoma.org or (253) 591-5462.

ROTARY TO HOLD ANNUAL CELEBRATE COMMUNITY EVENT

The Tacoma Narrows Rotary fifth annual Celebrate Community 2018 event is scheduled for May 5 at Curtis Junior High School from 5:30-7:30 p.m. As has been the tradition, Rotary scholarships for high school seniors, the UPPTSA Golden Acorn Winners, and the City of University Place Volunteer Award will all be given. This year the event is adding scholarships for preschool children, a request from the local teachers to help improve literacy in early education in the school district.  

This year’s featured speaker is Claire Flemming, Curtis High School graduate and 2011 Daffodil Queen. She was a Rotary summer exchange Student to Ecuador during her high school years. Flemming completed her B. A. at the University of Washington in political science. She spent a year during her college education studying abroad in Spain. She was also selected for a Department of State internship and assigned to the embassy in El Salvador. After graduation, the South Korean government hired her to teach English in their public-school system for two years. This year she is one of 20 students for the inaugural class of the University of Washington’s Adolescent and Child Psychology Master’s Program. She has now been accepted next year to the University of the Pacific doctorate program in psychology.

Come enjoy a catered dinner by Chef Sunshine Catering and celebrate the University Place community for another year. 

Please contact Kathy@sunsetbible.com to order tickets.

VETERANS OF FOREIGN WARS RECOGNIZE FIREFIGHTERS

Two East Pierce Fire & Rescue Firefighters are to be recognized by the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) for their service to the community.

Firefighter Lance Schinkal and firefighter-paramedic Jennifer Killion are both to be recognized by VFW Post 11401 and District 3 on May 20 in Yelm.

Schinkal is to be recognized as the District Firefighter of the Year and Killion as the District EMT of the Year.

In addition to working as a firefighter, Schinkal also volunteers as a Fire Department chaplain for EPFR, working with the Tacoma Pierce County Chaplaincy. He leads the EPFR team of Chaplains.

Killion has put in additional time working on special projects for the EPFR Emergency Medical Services Division. Most recently she has been representing the agency in a stroke study, which may lead to new treatments in the field for stroke patients. This project may result in not only saving more lives, but improving the quality of life for people who have suffered a stroke. 

Not only is Killion being recognized by the local VFW district, but she has also been selected as the State of Washington VFW EMT of the Year. She will receive this honor at a dinner on June 22 in Bremerton.

“I am extremely proud of Jennifer and Lance for the hard work and many additional hours they contribute to the betterment of the community and our organization,” stated Fire Chief Bud Backer. “In addition, I’d like to thank the VFW for recognizing the service of first responders, but most of all, thanking the members of the VFW for what they have done for our nation.”

DR. LIN ZHOU SIGNS ON AS PRESIDENT OF BATES TECHNICAL COLLEGE

From immigrant to college president, Dr. Lin Zhou will sign her two-year employment contract as president of Bates Technical College at the Board of Trustees meeting on Monday, April 30, 3 p.m. at South Campus.
Zhou and her husband Jason emigrated from Beijing, China in 1999, both only speaking English they learned in school. She enrolled in English as a second language at Lake Washington Institute of Technology, and quickly excelled. She earned her associate degree in computer science and network technology, and later worked at LWIT as a technical aide.

“I am proud to say that a technical college is where my American dream journey started,” said Zhou. From there, she earned her master’s degree in business administration from City University, and a doctorate in education from Oregon State University. In 2017, she attended Harvard University’s Institute of Educational Management program.

Having worked in several management-level positions at both LWIT and Bates, including associate dean of extended learning, director of a branch campus, dean of instruction and executive dean, Zhou most recently served as Bates’ vice president for institutional effectiveness and student success.
“It’s amazing how education can change a person’s life,” said Zhou. “I never imagined that one day I would work in higher education. I am here today because education really works.

Washington state community and technical colleges lead students to greater opportunities. I am honored to have the opportunity to serve and lead Bates, and to provide our community with high quality education.”

In a historic first, Zhou is the first female to lead the college, and the first female Chinese immigrant in Washington to serve as president of a public two-year college. For more information, go to www.bates.ctc.edu/BatesPresident, or call (253) 680-7100.

REBUILDING TOGETHER SOUTH SOUND TO TRANSFORM 26 HOMES

Rebuilding Together South Sound will provide critical repairs for the Robinson household on Saturday, April 28. Michael (51, veteran) and his wife Tracie, are full-time caregivers to Tracie’s mom, Ruth (77, disabled). Ruth struggles with severe arthritis. The Robinsons’ home is riddled with excessive water damage inside and out. Volunteers from Rebuilding Together South Sound and the Walsh Group plan to repair the surrounding drywall and replace the shower, modifying it for Ruth’s accessibility and safety. The other major part of this project will be the replacement of the deck and stairs along the side of the home. The home’s deck and stairs are rotted and dangerous. The family is currently unable to even exit and walk on any portion of the deck or use the stairs, as a number of stairs are completely gone. With this exit unusable, this poses a potentially fatal problem in case the family needs to exit the house. Volunteers will further impact this family’s health and safety by demolishing and replacing the deck and stairs, cleaning and repairing the water damage to the sliding glass doors, and replacing the siding under the deck. Additional health and safety modifications include installing handrails on the interior stairs and replacing doorknobs with levers. Finally, some yard work will be done to improve both the safety and security of the homeowners as part of the Sears Heroes at Home program.

Heroes at Home, created through a partnership between Sears and Rebuilding Together, is a national program designed to assist low-income members of the military, their families and veterans with the home repairs and modifications they need. Since the inception of the program in 2007, more than $23 million has already been raised for Heroes at Home and veterans services; and through more than 1,700 projects, nearly 42,000 volunteers have donated 333,000 hours to support veterans and their families through critical repairs to veterans homes and nonprofit facilities that serve them.

The project kick off will be at 8 a.m. and project will end at 4 p.m. at 31320 10th Ave. South in Federal Way.

VOLUNTEERS NEEDED TO PLAN LOCAL WALK TO END ALZHEIMER’S

The Alzheimer’s Association Washington State Chapter is looking for volunteers to help plan the Walk to End Alzheimer’s in Tacoma. This year’s event is being held Sunday, Sept. 16 at University of Puget Sound.

Volunteers are asked to participate in the Walk to End Alzheimer’s Planning Committee, which helps grow the event by recruiting new teams, marketing the event in the community and securing sponsorships. Committee members also help with event production and logistics.

The Walk to End Alzheimer’s is the third largest event of its kind in the country. Last year, 850 people participated in the Tacoma Walk, raising more than $150,000. Funds raised for the event are used for Alzheimer’s research and to provide care and support for local families impacted by the disease.

In Washington there are more than 110,000 people living with Alzheimer’s disease and another 340,000 unpaid caregivers providing their support. It is the third leading cause of death in Washington, and the only one in the top 10 without a way to prevent, cure or even slow its progression.

If you are interested in volunteering for the Tacoma Walk to End Alzheimer’s, please contact Stephanie Budrus, event coordinator, at (206) 529-3861 or sbudrus@alz.org.

CHENEY STADIUM GATHERING TO PRAY FOR ‘MORE HOPE, LOVE, AND UNITY IN THE 253’ 

On Thursday, May 3, a partnership of more than 100 South Puget Sound organizations and community leaders invites the greater Tacoma community to gather at Cheney Stadium (2502 S. Tyler St., Tacoma, south gate parking lot) at 12 p.m. for a free, all-ages-welcome, hour-long prayer event. Prayer will focus primarily on “more hope, love, and unity in the 253,” and be led by a number of individuals representing several sectors of the South Puget Sound’s richly diverse community, including business, government, schools, and faith. The event will also feature music led by local artists and participation by Tacoma students. 

The 2018 National Day of Prayer on May 3 will mark the Tacoma event’s 12th consecutive year, and is being coordinated by The Sanctuary in North Tacoma. The Sanctuary opened as a citywide house of prayer following the National Day of Prayer in 2017, and is now open for prayer 45 hours a week. 

For more information about the National Day of Prayer event at Cheney Stadium, or about The Sanctuary, visit pray253.com or contact Event Coordinator Gretchen Barrocio at info@pray253.com or (253) 756-5300. For information regarding directions, parking, or accessibility for disabled individuals, visit weRtacoma.com. 

The National Day of Prayer is an annual observance held on the first Thursday of May, inviting people of all faiths to pray for the nation. It was created in 1952 by a joint resolution of the United States Congress, and signed into law by President Harry S. Truman. For more information about the National Day of Prayer visit nationaldayofprayer.org. 

KEYBANK GRANT TO BENEFIT UWT

A $300,000 grant from KeyBank Foundation to the University of Washington-Tacoma will support the development of a new UW-Tacoma Opportunity Academy in UW- Tacoma’s Center for Career Development & Education.

“The KeyBank Foundation is built on the premise of transforming communities by ensuring thriving students, a thriving workforce and thriving neighborhoods,” said Brian Marlow, KeyBank South Puget Sound market president. “One of our priorities is to fund academic programs that help students achieve, which is why we are delighted to support this new Opportunity Academy.”

The Opportunity Academy will be a cornerstone program within the career development unit, with two major focuses. The first is to provide students with more opportunities to incorporate professional development and financial wellness alongside their academic work, through an expanded slate of workshops, networking activities and information sessions. The second is an enhanced focus on increasing internship opportunities for students and employer outreach aimed at building great workplace experiences for UW-Tacoma students, as a vital part of their overall educational experience.

“The grant will help us expand the scope of our internship activity,” said Dawn Williams, assistant director for Career Development & Education. “It will also help us create more opportunities for students to participate in internships and other work-based learning experiences. It will help us build and expand a strategic understanding of our many existing relationships with employers throughout the South Sound.”

THREE POSITIONS OPEN ON PLANNING COMMISSION

Tacoma City Council is looking to fill three positions on the Planning Commission – the District Nos. 2, 3, and 5 positions, each serving a three-year term. Applicants seeking the district positions must reside in that district.

The Planning Commission develops and updates the Comprehensive Plan and its elements; formulates effective and efficient land use and development regulations and processes that implement the Comprehensive Plan. This Commission reviews various planning issues, such as area-wide zoning reclassifications, moratoria, interim zoning, pre-annexation planning, historic district designation, urban design, and transportation and capital facilities programs.

The Planning Commission consists of nine members appointed by the City Council for three-year terms.  All members must be residents of Tacoma. Commission meetings occur the first and third Wednesday of each month beginning at 5 p.m.

For additional information on the Planning Commission, please visit their website or contact Lihuang Wung, Planning and Development Services, at (253) 591-5682.

Applications must be submitted to the City Clerk’s Office by Tuesday, May 8. To apply, visit cityoftacoma.org/cbcapplication or contact Jessica Jenkins at (253) 591-5178, servetacoma@cityoftacoma.org, or the City Clerk’s Office, Room 11, Tacoma Municipal Building North, 733 Market Street, Tacoma, WA 98402.

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