Behind the scenes board members at NeighborWorks make all the difference


We want to let you in on a little secret. Even though you see our names in the paper each week and we mention other staff members from time to time, we have the support of a very strong and helpful board of directors, we deem critical to making NeighborWorks of Grays Harbor a success.

We had a banner year this year — putting $1.5 million into our Grays Harbor economy in the form of rehab loans to homeowners, homes we purchased and rehabbed, housing counseling and down payment assistance for new homebuyers — all creating and sustaining jobs in the community!

Last week, at our 30th annual meeting and dinner, the keynote speaker from Washington D.C., NeighborWorks America Operations Manager Robert Burns, reviewed some of those successes and many milestones from our 30 years in existence. He also gave well-deserved kudos to our long serving board and staff for their continued success in community development.

Thanking our Board of Directors in such a setting was very appropriate, and we want to further spotlight these members for the community who is ultimately responsible for making a difference to the lives of so many people over the years by creating ongoing affordable housing opportunities through partnerships with business, governments and residents.

So, without further ado, we’d like to introduce and highlight each board member for a job well done.

THE NEIGHBORWORKS BOARD

Starting from the longest serving member, Larry Lauritizen, retired from the City of Aberdeen’s Building Dept., is one of the founders of this organization and has served on the board since the beginning — then named Aberdeen Neighborhood Housing Service — Nov. 17, 1981. He still wears many hats for us starting with resident representative. He’s also on the Strategic Planning Committee, Loan Committee, Nomination Committee, and Contractor Review Committee.

Bonnie Gilovich, a retired Aberdeen school teacher, Bonnie has served on the board since 1989 as a resident member. She currently serves on both the Nominating and Personnel Committees.

Mike Sand, the president of Timberland Bank, has also given of his time and extensive talents to the NeighborWorks board since 1989. As one of the financial institution representatives, he also serves on the Strategic Planning Committee, the Business and Finance Committee and the Loan Committee.

Norm Sprague, owner-broker of Twin County Realty, has brought his expert knowledge to the board as the real estate representative since 1991. He also serves on the Strategic Planning Committee, the Business and Finance Committee, and the Personnel Committee.

Diane Peters has served as a resident member since 1995. She serves on the Personnel Committee.

Bob Waite, building official for the City of Aberdeen, is the city’s representative on our board. He began his tenure in 1997 and serves on the Contractor Review Committee.

Will Foster, of Street, Lundgren, Foster Architects in Montesano, has served on the board since 1999 as a business representative. He also serves on the Personnel Committee and the Contractor Review Committee.

Donna McCallum, clerk for the Grays Harbor County Commissioners, has served on the board since 2002 as the county’s representative and the board’s secretary. She also serves on the Executive Committee

Bill Sidor, building official for the City of Cosmopolis, has been the city’s representative bringing his expertise to the board since 2004. He also serves as our 1st vice president and on the Executive Committee and Loan Committee.

Edward Quijada, manager of the Hoquiam branch of Bank of the Pacific, has served on the board since 2004. He is a resident member serving a second term as president of our board as well as on the Business and Finance Committee, Loan Committee, Executive Committee, and Personnel Committee.

Ty Palmer, the senior vice president of the Bank of the Pacific in Aberdeen, has been on our board since 2006. As a financial institute representative, he has brought his knowledge and dedication not only to the Board but also to the Loan, Strategic Planning and Nomination Committees. Ty is 2nd vice president.

Alan Gozart, owner of Harbor Architects in Aberdeen, served on the board as a resident from 1988 to 1997 and then began serving again in 2006. Alan brings his knowledge and experience of the area and housing issues to the board as well as serving on the Strategic Planning Committee and the Contractor Review Committee.

Terri Degner, the executive vice president and CFO of Anchor Bank, Terri currently serves as our treasurer. Serving on the board since 2006, she also brings her expertise to both the Business & Finance and Executive Committees.

KUDOS TO THE CROWD

From “regular” citizens to those with special expertise in the areas of finance, loans, real estate, government, architecture, housing, code compliance and much more, our board members are dedicated to helping improve our Grays Harbor community.

Thank them for their service next time you see them, as we do here!

Dave Murnen and Pat Beaty are construction specialists at NeighborWorks of Grays Harbor County, where Murnen is the executive director. This is a non-profit organization committed to creating safe and affordable housing opportunities for all residents of Grays Harbor County.

Do you have questions about home repair, renting, remodeling or becoming a homeowner? Call us at 533-7828, write us or visit us at 710 E. Market St. in Aberdeen.