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May 2016

By May 1, 2016Archives, Newsletter

President’s Message

May 2016 News Brief
President’s Message

Dear Members,

Now that the membership has voted and the grantees have been announced, we can reflect for a moment and enjoy the satisfaction of completing another grant cycle. We asked the Grants Committee Coordinators – Lynne Heidel, Charlotte Unger, Kat Vanden Heuvel, and Gina Wolcott — to summarize the year and comment on the future of our grant-giving process. Their response describes in a nutshell how the Women’s Foundation accomplished its main purpose this year.

Joanne Wetherell

WRWF President 

LOOKING FORWARD, LOOKING BACK, by the Grants Coordinating Committee

To begin, we are proud of and grateful for the efforts of many women involved in the process of grant selection and review. The committee volunteers commit a substantial amount of time and thought over more than half the year. The nonprofit organizations that participate also commit to a lengthy review and selection process. The proposals, moreover, improve in quality every year; our one regret is that we are unable to fund every request.

The Grants Coordinating Committee began working last summer to create five subcommittees to review requests for grants from Blaine County nonprofits. We set the 2016 calendar for reviewing requests, and we updated documents and forms to be used in evaluating those requests. Over the fall months, we held two, well attended volunteer training sessions and two informational meetings for nonprofits.

By November 1, the Grants Coordinating Committee had received 45 grant requests totaling over $650,000. We distributed those requests to five pairs of subcommittee chairs: Sue Green and Debby Law, Gail Elkins and Terri Le Faivre, Susan Jackson and Nancie Tatum, Sara Nelson and Penny Weiss, and Gina Wolcott and Louise Noyes. The subcommittee chairs each led groups of 8-10 volunteers through the process of evaluating grant requests.

After a series of subcommittee meetings, site visits with the nonprofits, and two meetings of the full Grants Committee, 18 of the original requests were placed onto a ballot to be voted on by the entire membership. Over 70% of the membership voted. After we tallied the votes onApril 16, 14 nonprofits were awarded a total of $224,600 in grants. For the Grants Coordinating Committee, the process lasted 8 months. For the subcommittees, the process lasted 5 months. For the applicants, it lasted almost 7 months.

As we catch our collective breaths for a few weeks, the Grants Coordinating Committee is now looking forward to next year. We are seriously considering changes to the process to encourage even more members to participate on the Grants Committee. Our goal is to compress the process into fewer months while maintaining a standard for thorough review of all proposals. Look for these changes over the summer. With the changes, we hope more members than ever will want and be able to participate in this most important work of the Foundation.

— Lynne Heidel, Charlotte Unger, Kat Vanden Heuvel, Gina Wolcott

WRWF Board and Leadership Changes Planned

The Governance Nominating Committee has been involved in creating a slate of women who have demonstrated involvement in the work of WRWF. We are pleased to report that we have 13 women who wish to participate in Board and Leadership Development positions. We have taken into consideration their skills, background and areas of interest, and the needs of the Board and committee support.

The Board has now confirmed the slate of Board candidates put forth by the Nominating Committee. Present Board members have contacted the Board applicants for confirmation of their nominations. Board members (and those who will move onto the Board in August) will be approaching the Leadership Development applicants to join them on their committees. All nominated Board members will be presented to the WRWF membership on a ballot for a vote at the Annual Meeting in August.

I wish to thank the Nominating Team for their thoughtful consideration of the applicants: Peggy Grove; Marcia Liebich; Esther Ochsman; Joanne Wetherell; Gail Wilkie; Gina Wolcott.

— Janet DeBard, 2016 Nominating Chair


Welcome to Our New Governance Chair, Rebecca Michael!

The Board of WRWF wishes to welcome Rebecca Michael as Board Governance Chair.  As this position is presently open, Rebecca will assume her duties in June.

Rebecca brings an impressive law background from Southern California that focused on regulatory law.  During her legal career Rebecca served on a variety of boards and commissions including the City of San Diego Park and Recreation Board and Land Development Code Team, the County of San Diego Air Pollution Control District Hearing Board and the San Diego County Bar Association Land Use Committee.  She was also board member and president of Lawyers Club of San Diego.  She continues to be a member of the City of San Diego Land Development Code Monitoring Team.

Rebecca stated that her experience in WRWF has been very positive to date.  She has served on a Grants Committee and has other community involvements – Nordic Courtesy Patrol volunteer and assisting in The Community Library’s English as a Second Language program.  Rebecca looks forward to utilizing her background and skills in the position of Governance Chair of Wood River Women’s Foundation.



Penny Weiss, On Her Return from “The Way”

Upon my return last week from traversing the Camino de Santiago Compostela (a 500 mile pilgrimage across Spain) here are my thoughts. It was, without question, the most difficult, grueling physical experience of my entire life. It was also one of the most amazing, fascinating, rewarding and fulfilling experiences of my entire life. I was told I was too out of shape (true), had not trained (true), could not read a map (true), and way too old (never believe that one gals!) to even attempt such an endeavor. Yet, I did and now I can say I DID IT! It would be dishonest of me to say that I am not proud of that.

However, the “enlightment” that I truly brought home with me is this: the people, the amazing, incredible, generous, kind, loving people, of this world are truly God’s greatest creation. The languages, the cultures, the beliefs were many along The Way, but in the end we are all part of the exact same human species with the exact same hope — acceptance, peace and genuine kindness and love for each other. I will never, ever forget the people.




President’s Closing Statement

Once again, special thanks to our Grants Committee team, all of our volunteers, and to all of our members who each contribute in their own way. This was another rewarding and successful year of collaboration. Our community is benefiting in countless ways from the support we are providing.

Members, please put the upcoming events on your calendar and be sure to participate.

Joanne Wetherell

Joanne Wetherell

Joanne Wetherell, President

Our Mission Statement

The WRWCF inspires and educates women to become leaders in philanthropy and brings significant, positive change to the community by pooling and distributing its members’ resources.

Wood River Womens Foundation

PO Box 3686
Ketchum, ID 83340

Please note that the old website address will take you to the new website

Mark Your Calendar:

Thursday, June 23rd
5:00 – 6:30 PM
Jennifer Badish’s home

“Tini” Party: New member orientation and welcome.

Wednesday, July 6th
5:30 – 7:00 PM
Anita Weisberg’s home, 25 Greenhorn Gulch, Hailey

Summer Social

Tuesday, August 2nd
11:30 – 2:00, Carol’s Dollar Mountain Lodge
Members Only
$35.00, Register on line
Annual Meeting

Welcome New Members

Anette Farnham
PO Box 5373
Ketchum, ID 83340

Carol Holman
PO Box 1477
Sun Valley, ID 83353

Elaine Phillips
PO Box 1013
Sun Valley, ID 83353

Nancy Rosenberg
15461 Milldale Drive
Los Angeles, CA 90077

News Brief Team:

Judy Cahill

Janet DeBard 

Peggy Grove 

Louisa Moats