[October 11, 2018] Born and raised in the northern suburbs of Chicago, I had the opportunity to attend one of the top high schools in the nation. I then attended and received my degree in History from North Park University in Chicago. After graduating, my partner and I moved to Seattle, and eventually moved north to Ferndale 13 years ago so we could afford to buy a house and send our children to good schools. We have two daughters, ages 15 and 12, and they attend Ferndale High School and Vista Middle School. Having lived in the Pacific Northwest for just over 20 years now, we now understand how it really is a “matter of pride” to live in a small town. This has become our home. It is imperative that we have the best opportunities for our young people, which is why I’m voting YES for the bond.
Currently I work for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Whatcom County. When I first started there four years ago, I ran the Ferndale Clubhouse, greeting 130 kids a day. No longer in the Clubhouse, I work at the administrative office in resource development, finding the means to continue our mission, which offers hope and opportunity to young people. While the District’s aim is to build graduates, our aim is to build productive, caring and responsible citizens. Prior to the Boys & Girls Clubs, I ran the first federally funded Street Outreach Program serving homeless, runaway and at-risk youth in Bellingham. In every interaction I had with these resilient young people, I always wondered, how did the community fail them? Now I am a fierce advocate for children and young people, constantly looking for ways to improve connectivity to adulthood.
For the past four years, I have served on the Ferndale Chamber of Commerce’s Board of Directors, and this year I am serving as the Board President. I am proud to say that the Chamber is working closely with the Ferndale School District on a Ferndale Futures program that will connect our local businesses to students in order to create opportunities through internships, job shadowing opportunities and career jobs in the future. Students who enter the workforce with more knowledge and skills will be more competitive in local and global markets.
My volunteer experience in the Ferndale School District has been at various levels. I have served in the classrooms of both my children; on the Life Skills Task Force, to decide where to move the Elementary Life Skills program after Mountain View; and I spent the last three years serving on the Communication Advisory Committee with other community stakeholders.
My hope and aim for my involvement on this committee is to: 1) provide careful inspection and discernment of cost estimates and actuals in order to keep the Bond project on schedule and on budget; and 2) provide my expertise in clearly and succinctly communicating information to the public.