Pass the Gavel – 8 Leadership Legacies

Julie Sage Written by Julie Sage plus guest contributors

 gavel1Successfully entering our 30th year of operation, (1987-2017), we have had dedicated member volunteers who have provided valuable leadership to our nonprofit organization. They have contributed their time and talents to our Assistance League of Greater Placer chapter’s development and helped further our mission.  We began in 1987 with 30 chapter members and now enter the year 2017 with 200 more members.  Each Board President worked tirelessly, with no paid compensation.  Each shouldered the burden (with Board and member support) to grow and move our chapter’s philanthropic programs forward, to see improvement in the lives of members in our communities.

Here’s an overview, in their own words, of what some of our Past Presidents accomplished in office and what they are doing after leaving office in their Post-Presidential life.  And after their Presidential term was over they retired. NOT!!

“I served on the Board several years before rising to the President position.  I could scream when Board meetings were two-three hours long.  I was successful in changing to the Consent Agenda format in lieu of the Board members reading their reports at the Board meeting.  They still use the Consent Agenda and that makes me feel like I accomplished something special.”  Barbara Treleaven.  And… “I’m proud that I got the Sacramento Assistance League chapter to come demonstrate a Kids on the Block program to our members and was successful in bringing Kids on the Block into our chapter as a philanthropic program while I was President.”

“I’m proud that during my years as President, we changed our organization’s name to include all of Placer County.  We were Assistance League of Auburn Foothills and it was a big deal to increase our service area and change it to Assistance League of Greater Placer.” Mary Ellen Oliveira

 “I’m proud that I am one of the founding members of the Community Assistance program, having been involved in every aspect of the initial planning 9 years ago.  We never know what might be asked of us for children, families, foster youth, individuals or seniors in need in our community.  This program is never static, requires independent thinking and actions, and is full of challenges.  That’s why I like it.”  Suzanne Ross.

“As a retired teacher, I wanted to continue working with children and this was a good opportunity.  I tutor at Skyridge School and am equally excited about being on the Scholarship committee because of the young men and women we help to obtain a higher education.  Without our financial support and encouragement, many of these students would not go on to school after high school graduation.”  Mary Stevens.

“I am proud of the fact that when I was President, the chapter voted to eliminate voting and nonvoting classifications of memberships and have only one class of membership.  The specific requirements for volunteering are now recommended participation. I am currently the chair of New Member Orientation.  My goal is to provide new members with information and how to navigate through our various programs. It is exciting to be able to provide new members with support.” Jayne Campbell.

 “I am most proud of our members – what an incredible group of dedicated, hard-working, compassionate volunteers.  After attending a meeting or event, my husband asks, “Why do you like it so much?”  I respond, “Because actually, I could be best friends with just about every member of the chapter!”  Dea Hogg. “I have always volunteered at Operation School Bell shopping; what an incredible experience to behold so much goodness at one time! This is one program that will be a part of my life for a long time to come.”

“By the time I became President, I had been a member for 11 years and had held several Board positions. I found I was often the “go-to” person when questions arose.  I felt I had a good idea of what was going on in the Chapter. I am currently Chairman of the Tutor Time program. Being able to work one-on-one with students in grades K-3 is very rewarding.  We help with reading and math, and often you can see the light bulb come on when a kid “gets it”.  Janet Wheatley.

We’ve come a long way!  hour-glass-2

 In the early years, new members were invited by another member to join.  You would be sponsored by that member for one year as a “provisional” member.  After the 1 year, you would be approved or not.

Then we went through years of recruiting friends and acquaintances through other social events.  Past President Jo Ann Murano tells, “I sat next to then President, Mary Ellen Oliveira at the Auburn Symphony and the next thing I knew is that she had a deal for me:  Assistance League of Greater Placer.  I’d never heard of Assistance League.  I am glad I joined and am proud of our many philanthropies and their outreach to Placer County.  We do make a difference!”

Now you are more than likely to know about us through newsprint, social media, marketing events, our community programs, visiting our Thrift Shop in Auburn or attending one of our signature fundraisers. We have certainly grown and our members ALWAYS put caring and commitment into action.   

2 thoughts on “Pass the Gavel – 8 Leadership Legacies

  1. Enjoyed reading the histories of these Past Presidents. So proud and thankful to be part of our organization!! Janet Patten


  2. This was a wonderful article. So well written and so informative. I didn’t know our chapter was 30 years old and I loved learning about our past presidents. It’s special to be a member of such a fabulous organization. Joanne Groth


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