A tip of the hat to scholarship auction and school boards

2:06 pm January 16th, 2014

The Dispatch was proud to be one of the many businesses and community organizations that contributed to Graham Business Association’s latest scholarship auction. The annual event raises money for graduates of Graham-Kapowsin, Bethel and Challenger high schools in the Bethel School District to attend college. It’s a great cause, obviously, and one we’re always happy to be part of and support in any way we can along with everyone else who makes it their mission to help students. I’ll let Jimmy Morgan, the auction chairman and an Edward Jones representative, tell you more about the event held last November at the Silver Creek retirement and assisted living community in the Graham-South Hill area:
“Thank you,” Jones wrote recently to “members and friends” of Graham Business Association, “for your donations, hard work and bids. Your efforts raised over $4,500 for scholarships.
“We had more than 40 individuals and businesses donate items, and over 50 people attended the breakfast auction and spent an average of $90 each. That figure is even more remarkable when one realizes that the economy is not as great as we would like.
“Once again, members of the BEST Dollars for Scholars board came to help out so that GBA members could be in the room bidding and buying. (As one of the pre-auction steps, BEST and GBA members assembled donations at Morgan’s office in Graham). They were also at Silver Creek the night before the auction, setting up the tables and getting the auction ready for your bidding pleasure at 6 a.m. Silver Creek was so impressed by all of the efforts for the community made by GBA that they donated half the cost of the breakfasts to the project.”
Thank you, GBA and all the other auction supporters, for doing such great things for students. I’m already looking forward to the next auction.

• Speaking of schools, did you know that January is School Board Recognition Month in Washington? Locally and statewide, school communities and education advocates are formally honoring and thanking the citizens who serve as elected advocates of student learning and achievement while establishing policies and budgets – the latter a combined $10 billion – for school districts big and small.
I’ve never known a school board member who asks for or expects special attention and thanks for their work, which they pretty much do as volunteers. They also don’t do it for the compensation, which is good, because board members are paid relatively little or nothing. And personally, that’s fine. More on that in two paragraphs from now.
Despite their members’ utter lack of selflessness, I want to join everyone else in tipping my hat to the boards in the communities that The Dispatch serves. The Eatonville School Board members are Paulette Gilliardi, Ronda Litzenberger, Roger Andrascik, Jeff Lucas and John Lambrecht. And the Bethel School Board delegation includes Warren Smith, Brenda Rogers, Stan Chapin, John Manning and Amy Pivetta Hoffman.
I’m fortunate and honored to be a member of the Puyallup School Board. It’s a role I cherish, and I’m humbled to be among the folks in the Eatonville and Bethel districts and other districts across Washington who have the privilege of supporting students and educators. For me, no thanks is necessary. The real appreciation goes to the teachers, administrators and other staff who do so much for young people, families and communities.

Dispatch editor Pat Jenkins can be reached at and 360-832-4697.

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