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12/11/2013 2:55:00 PM Email this articlePrint this article 
Food bank seeks new board members

Sebastian Moraga
Staff writer

The leaders of the Cashmere Food Bank are asking you to get on board.

The bank's steering committee has begun receiving applications for its new board of directors, another step on the bank's growth.

"This will also help us to get out from under the umbrella of the Cashmere Ministerial Association, which gives us our 501(c)(3) status," said Sherri Wills-Green, a member of the bank's steering committee.

The 501(c)(3) status means an organization is a nonprofit. The plan is for the new board to set bylaws and then apply for its own designation as a nonprofit.

Until now, the bank has been administered -and well, according to most people- by Gary Cheever and Pam McNulty, with food being stored in a handful of places around town, including their garage.

"They have a little food in an airplane hangar, they have some in the basement of the Catholic church," Wills-Green said. "We would really like to have it all in one facility."

The duo, Wills-Green said, put out the word that they would like some help.

"The need is growing," Wills-Green said. "Pam and Gary would like to have more support in what they do, and that is something more sustainable in the long run."

The board would oversee what McNulty and Cheever do, Wills-Green said. Cheever and McNulty woud be the new volunteer directors of the food bank but the board would oversee its finances and its policies, she added.

"Pam and Gary are still very much involved," said Wills-Green, a member of the steering committee alongside community members like JoAnn Prusa, Cashmere Presbyterian Church pastor Chuck Clarke, Mayor Jeff Gomes, and Cheever and McNulty, as well.

Once the board is in place, Cheever's and McNulty's role will not be reduced, Wills-Green said, but the board will take on a prominent role.

Applications for the food bank board have been posted on the city's website, www.cityofcashmere.org.

Deadline for the application is Dec. 31. Applications may be turned in at the Cashmere Presbyterian Church, 303 Maple St., or mailed to Wills-Green, 106 Chase Ave., in Cashmere.

"Our goal is to have a nice representation of skill sets forming the board," Wills-Green said. "Ideally, we would have someone with a leadership background, someone with an advocacy background, someone with previous experience with food banks. We want to try to come up with a cross-section of people to best operate what we are trying to do."

In January, the steering committee will meet and choose the best nine applicants.

Responsibilities will include providing policy for operations and fiscal responsibility of the food bank. Terms on the board will last either two or three years.

Members will have to attend meetings and be prepared to contribute to the discussion of agenda items, as well as support the food bank with a donation of time or money, according to their ability.

More specifically, the first three duties of the new board will be to finalize the bylaws, find a facility and develop a volunteer base, Wills-Green said.

The food bank continues to be an important resource for the community. Last year, the bank served at least 3,500 individuals, Wills-Green said. More than half were children and about 500 were seniors.

"We had enough for everybody," she said. "It's amazing what they have done."

Cheever credited the community for their support of the food bank in lean and good times.

"There's always downturns and upturns," he said. "Cashmere always steps up to the plate. When things happen, Cashmere really helps out."

Sebastian Moraga can be reached at 782-3781 or reporter@cashmerevalleyrecord.com





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