Networking – June 2021


  • Miramar Health Center in Kennewick has announced the addition of two certified physician assistants to its team.

Hiep Nguyen earned his master of clinical health services degree and physician assistant certification from MEDEX Northwest at the University of Washington, in Seattle. Seeing firsthand the hardships of a single mom emigrating to the U.S. shaped how Nguyen views the world. He said he’s passionate about helping people overcome hard times, poverty and sickness and now is eager to do that in the exam room.

Vannina Gwilliam started her career as a radiology technologist and medical interpreter before becoming a physician assistant. She earned her master’s in physician assistant studies from the University of Utah School of Medicine, Salt Lake City, Utah. Gwilliam, hails from La Rioja, Argentina. She enjoys helping her patients find culturally appropriate solutions to their health care concerns.

  • The AAA Washington Board of Trustees has named Heather Snavely to succeed Kirk Nelson as president and chief executive officer of the Bellevue-based company after his retirement. Nelson served as president and CEO of AAA Washington since April 2011. Snavely will be the first woman to lead the organization that serves 1.2 million members in Washington state and north Idaho with emergency road service, leisure travel planning and personal and small-business insurance. Snavely comes to AAA Washington from PCC Community Markets in Seattle, where she has served as vice president of marketing. Prior to PCC Community Markets, Snavely was the senior director of global brand marketing for Brooks Running Co. in Seattle, and director of global consumer communications at Microsoft for Xbox in Redmond.
  • Walla Walla-based Baker Boyer Bank has announced two new hires at its Kennewick office. Mistee Verhulp joins as a family advisor, bringing a unique skillset of legal expertise and a passion for helping clients achieve their financial goals and life dreams. She graduated from Gonzaga Law School and practiced as a licensed attorney prior to joining Baker Boyer.

Karen Tomerlin joins as a trust advisor, bringing years of expertise in corporate and private law. She received her bachelor’s in political science from Western Washington University and law degree from Western Michigan University Cooley Law.

  • Historic Downtown Prosser has hired Jude Schnellbach as its new market manager for the Prosser Farmers Market. The 2017 Prosser High School alum recently graduated from Washington State University with a degree in accounting and finance.
  • MMEC
    Architecture and Interiors
    announced two new staff members at its Kennewick office. Ethan Sanders joins as an unlicensed associate architect. He is a recent Washington State University graduate and interned with MMEC over the past few summers. Brynna Jones joins as an interior designer. She is a recent Washington State University graduate and previously served MMEC as a student intern beginning in 2018.


  • Alison Colotelo, a senior research scientist and project manager at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, has been selected for the Hydropower Foundation’s advisory board. She is the only representative from a national laboratory on the 11-member foundation body. Other advisory board members represent regulatory agencies, utilities, hydropower facilities and private investment firms.
  • Columbia Generating Station stakeholders, representing 92 utilities in six states, elected member utilities and individual officers to the nuclear power plant’s participants review board. The three utility-appointed participants elected for a three-year term to the nine-member Nuclear Energy Participant Board are Jane Van Dyke, Clark Public Utilities; Pete Simonich, Missoula Electric Cooperative; and Sid Logan, Snohomish County PUD. The PRB also elected Stu Nelson, Franklin PUD, as chairman; Sid Logan, Snohomish PUD, as vice chairman; and Ron Gold, Mason PUD 1, as secretary. Officers serve a one-year term. Nelson has been a member of the board since 2007. The PRB reviews Columbia’s annual budget and fuel management plans, as well as nuclear construction and purchases of more than $500,000.
    Greg Cullen, Energy Northwest’s vice president for energy services and development, was elected to serve a three-year term on the Northwest Public Power Association board, which represents and serves consumer-owned, locally-driven utilities in the western U.S. and Canada.


  • Monyay Green, Lourdes PACT Team supervisor at Lourdes Counseling Center in Pasco, has been recognized as the hospital’s 2021 Mercy Award winner. The Mercy Award recognizes one employee from each of LifePoint Health’s hospitals who profoundly touches the lives of others and best represents the spirit and values on which the company was founded.

Each hospital winner will be considered for LifePoint’s 2021 companywide Mercy Award. The companywide winner will be announced this summer and honored during a ceremony in August in Nashville.

Green is serves on the Great Columbia Behavioral Health Regional Advisory Board, Hot Spotters and Continuum of Care Committee. He also continuously represents Lourdes at various community meetings. In 2008, Green was one of the recipients of the Lourdes Mission Award, which recognizes five Lourdes employees each year who live the Lourdes mission and values and inspire those around them to do the same with support, encouragement and challenges.

  • Michelle Clary, a senior wealth advisor with Piton Wealth of the Thrivent Advisor Network in Kennewick, has received the 2020 Voice in Philanthropy Award from Thrivent Charitable Impact & Investing in Minneapolis. She is one of 57 financial advisors nationwide to be recognized. Selection for the award is based on total outright and deferred charitable gifts made by Clary’s clients through Thrivent Charitable in 2020. Additionally, she is a member of Thrivent Charitable’s VIP-Hall of Honor, which is awarded when clients’ cumulative charitable gifts to Thrivent Charitable exceed $5 million. These gifts will benefit a variety of local, national and global charities according to clients’ wishes.
  • The Government Finance Officers Association of the United States and Canada has awarded the Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in financial reporting to Benton County for its comprehensive annual financial report for the fiscal year ended Dec. 31, 2019. The report has been judged by an impartial panel to meet the high standards of the program, which includes demonstrating a constructive “spirit of full disclosure” to clearly communicate its financial story and motivate potential users and user groups to read the report. This is the 16th consecutive year that the county and the auditor’s office have received it.
  • Robert Franklin, assistant director of the Washington State University Tri-Cities Hanford History Project and teaching assistant professor of history, is part of a history film focusing on the Manhattan Project that was recently nominated for a Daytime Emmy Award in the category of “Outstanding Daytime Non-Fiction Special.” “The Manhattan Project Electronic Field Trip” was produced by the National WWII Museum based in New Orleans. The 70-minute film, available on YouTube, focuses on the three major sites instrumental in the Manhattan Project, which developed the technology and produced the plutonium and uranium for the world’s first atomic bombs: Hanford; Los Alamos, New Mexico; and Oak Ridge, Tennessee.


  • Gov. Jay Inslee has appointed James Millbauer of Kennewick to the state Building Code Council.


  • The West Richland Police Department announced four retirements: Detective Clark Boyer, 24 years of service, retired March 31; Officer Nick Letourneau, 21 years of service, retired April 23; Police Records Supervisor Tammy Davenport, 16 years of service, retired May 7; and Sgt. Terry Boehmler, 26 years of service, retired May 31.


  • The One Hanford Feeding Families Fundraiser held April 19-30 raised $47,200 to fight hunger in the Columbia Basin. Hanford prime contractors and their labor union partners supporting the U.S. Department of Energy’s Hanford site hosted its second annual online fundraiser to help Second Harvest respond to continued elevated demand for basic food needs due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Donations were used to help Second Harvest source and distribute healthy food to children, families and seniors facing hunger through its partner food banks, meal programs and mobile market distributions. Organizations involved in the fundraiser included Amentum, Bechtel, Central Plateau Cleanup Company, HPMC Occupational Medical Services, Hanford Mission Integration Solutions, Washington River Protection Solutions, HAMTC and Central Washington Building Trades.
  • 3 Rivers Community Foundation wrapped up its Covid Response with $120,000 in grants to nonprofits in Benton and Franklin counties. These grants are made possible by a $40,000 donation from Battelle, which manages and operates Pacific Northwest National Laboratory for the U.S. Department of Energy, a match of that donation by All in WA, and donations from individual donors. Grants made possible by these donations include: $10,000 to Second Harvest to support the increased food insecurity needs during the pandemic; $10,000 to Safe Harbor Support Center to support its virtual programs addressing trauma and behavioral intervention programs, family assistance program, 24-hour shelter for teens, case management and parent education/coaching; and $10,000 to Community Action Connections to support the Second Chance Center providing microwavable hot meals to families who are unable to access other services, are living on the street or are doubled-up with other families.
  • Gesa Credit Union donated $15,000 to support home fire preparedness, response and recovery efforts throughout Washington. The gift includes $5,000 to the local American Red Cross chapter which serves families in Central and Southeastern Washington, as well as $2,500 each to the Red Cross Northwest Region and chapters headquartered in Spokane, Tacoma and Seattle.


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