Polestar Technical Services won “best lane decoration” for the second year in a row during the 21st annual Bowling Classic to benefit Junior Achievement. The prize was a hot pizza to enjoy while bowling. The Richland company decorated with two very large fake plants from the office, kids’ stuffed jungle animals, mosquito netting, a big mushroom and a turtle. The team also dressed up in safari gear and animal print and used a leopard print bowling ball. Pictured, from left to right, back row: Kathy Miller, managing director, and her husband Jason Miller; Marina Scofield, principal program support specialist; Eric Clements, director business development; Bill Bailey, director of engineering and technical programs; and Patty Bailey, director project operations. From left to right, front row: Samee Nihill, senior administrative specialist, and Jessica Fuller, program/project support specialist. (Courtesy Polestar)
Around Town Gallery
Lisa Godwin, left, executive director of Tri-County Partners Habitat for Humanity, listens to Larry Merk, a longtime Habitat volunteer, during a March 4 ceremony to celebrate the 100th home built by the 22-year-old nonprofit. The owners of the home at 1414 E. Adelia Ct. in Pasco received their keys during the event. The Burmese natives are Naw Mu Do and her husband Ku Nay Paw. The Tri-City nonprofit works with low-income families, sponsors and communities to build and renovate affordable housing. (Courtesy Tri-County Partners Habitat for Humanity)
Virgil Boyle, from left, former Benton REA trustee of District 9, and Kyle Shinn, former Benton REA trustee of District 6, stand with Mike Freepons, president of the Benton REA Board of Trustees and trustee of District 2, after being honored for their service during Benton REA’s Feb. 11 annual meeting in Prosser. Boyle served as a trustee for 26 years and Shinn for 14 years. The two trustees retired in December after their electric service area was transferred to Yakama Power last fall. (Courtesy Benton REA)
The Department of Energy’s Richland Operations Office, with support from Hanford site contractor Mission Support Alliance, donated more than 150 pieces of clothing, including pants, shirts, vests, jackets, coveralls and bib overalls to the Columbia Basin Veterans Coalition, which provides a variety of services to local veterans. The clothing, valued at more than $11,000, was donated March 2. (Courtesy MSA)
Brad Barker of U.S. Cellular shows students how to make straw rockets during a visit to the Boys & Girls Club of Benton and Franklin Counties in Pasco on Feb. 22 to teach youth about careers in engineering and technology as part of National Engineers Week. Engineering associates from U.S. Cellular conducted an “Ask an Engineer” session to engage students and demonstrate how science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) affect their daily lives. (Courtesy U.S. Cellular)
Gesa Credit Union and the Pasco School District have teamed up to raise money for students using a special Gesa Visa debit card. The new program earns money for high school student activities in the Pasco School District each time a cardholder swipes their card. Cards are available for Chiawana, Pasco and New Horizons high schools. The co-branded debit cards are free to Gesa members with a checking account. A similar partnership with the Kennewick, Richland and College Place school districts has raised over $10,000 for local students. Pictured, from left, are John Wallwork, Chiawana High principal; Michelle Whitney, Pasco School District superintendent; Maribel Alvares, Chiawana High School campus branch manager; Bonnie Wyrobek, Pasco High banking and financial services adviser; Andy Mendoza, Pasco High campus branch manager; Jesus Mendoza, New Horizons and district student board representative; Seth Johnson, New Horizons High principal; and Don Miller, Gesa president and CEO. (Courtesy Gesa Credit Union)
Baylee Easterday, secretary of the Chiawana High School Future Farmers of America, visited with second-graders during the Feb. 21 Agricultural Literacy Day at Livingston Elementary. The younger students were divided into four groups and spent 30 minutes at four different hands-on learning stations led by FFA students centered around agricultural robotics, floral design, animal husbandry and DNA extraction. (Courtesy Pasco School District)
Mauri Morgan of Pacific Northwest National Laboratory hippity-hops and bowls to win a ticket for the prize table at the 21st annual Bowling Classic, which ran from Feb. 27 to March 4 at Atomic Bowl in Richland. More than 2,000 Junior Achievement supporters raised nearly $300,000 to prepare 12,060 students with the skills they need to succeed in school and in life. (Courtesy Amy Purvis Photography)
Brian Griffith, assistant vice president of marketing for Gesa Credit Union, presents a $285 check to students Anisa Rodriguez, left, and Esperanza Fuentes of Somos Designs, the winner of the Pasco SOUP event on Feb. 23. Somos Designs is a T-shirt design project which aims to teach design and business concepts to Pasco High chool students. A total of $820 was awarded. Jacob Gonzalez, president of the Downtown Pasco Development Authority Board, is also pictured. Pasco SOUP is the development authority’s micro-financing program in which presenters pitch their proposals over a soup dinner for new business, nonprofit or community art projects. Attendees vote for the project they want to fund. (Photo courtesy Faith Hovde of Emerald Studios)
Mid-Columbia Libraries staff members, from left, Madison Rosenbaum, Celina Bishop, Michael Kuster and Elissa Burnley don their Roaring Twenties finest to celebrate the opening of the J.K. Rowling’s Magical World exhibition at Kennewick branch on Feb. 1. The month-long exhibit runs through March 5. (Courtesy Mid-Columbia Libraries)
Bleyhl Farm Service employees show their support of Tri-County Partners Habitat for Humanity’s three-month Power of One capital campaign. Employees agreed to donate $1 and/or volunteer to help build 24 homes in the four-acre Whitehouse Addition in east Pasco. (Courtesy Tri-County Partners Habitat for Humanity)
Former Cougar quarterback Jack “The Throwin’ Samoan” Thompson spoke Jan. 28 in Richland during a fundraiser brunch to support Washington State University Tri-Cities’ Carson College of Business. All money raised will be dedicated to student support and faculty development at the Tri-Cities campus. (Courtesy WSU Tri-Cities)
Mission Support Alliance employees recently bag fruit for Second Harvest to support childhood hunger relief as a sponsor of Second Harvest’s Bite2Go program, which provides weekend food supplies for students. More than 30 MSA employees and family members spent a few hours of their own time sorting for a school mobile food bank at Second Harvest. The team sorted almost 14,000 pounds of apples and potatoes, which will provide more than 11,000 meals. (Courtesy MSA)
A crane lifts a piece of the gate machinery sheave, one of many components assembled in the Ice Harbor Lock and Dam gate tower that’s used to raise and lower the downstream navigation lock gate outside of Burbank. The locks for eight dams on the Columbia and Snake rivers were taken out of service in December for a 14-week maintenance outage. Ice Harbor work includes the new operating machinery for the downstream gate. The Columbia-Snake federal navigation system is the top wheat-export gateway in the nation. (Courtesy Capt. Brigida Sanchez of Army Corps of Engineers Walla Walla District)
Columbia Center Rotary recently contributed $5,000 to the Latino heritage mural project that will be installed at the Columbia Gardens Wine and Artisan Village currently under construction on Columbia Drive in Kennewick. Pictured are Skip Novakovich, president of the Port of Kennewick Board of Commissioners, left, and Davin Diaz, Columbia Center Rotarian and chairman for the mural project committee. The mural is anticipated to be completed in September. (Courtesy Jessica Schultz)
Kadlec’s volunteer Auxiliary members presented a check for $260,000, their largest donation ever, to Kadlec Foundation, on Dec. 29 in Richland. Auxiliary members collected the money through personal donations, proceeds from the Kadlec gift shop, which is staffed by volunteers, and other Auxiliary fundraisers. The group is made up of volunteers who donate more than 50,000 hours per year, the equivalent of more than 24 full-time employees, to helping in many areas throughout the medical center. The donation will support select capital and program needs, including the mammography assistance program, Intensive Care Unit, birth center, Kadlec Neurological Resource Center and Our Little Lambs infant bereavement program. (Courtesy Kadlec)
The U.S. Department of Energy Office of River Protection and Bechtel National Inc., the contractor responsible for the Hanford Waste Treatment and Immobilization Plant, kicked off the final stage of testing intended to resolve one of the remaining technical issues at the treatment project last month. WTP personnel have begun the final phase of full-scale testing of control equipment and systems designed to safely mix radioactive waste in vessels at the pretreatment Facility. The vessels will store and process liquid radioactive waste before it is vitrified in other WTP facilities. The 65-ton vessel with capacity for 22,000 gallons was barged up the Columbia River in July. (Courtesy Bechtel National)
Columbia Basin College in Pasco celebrated the opening of its new Social Sciences and World Languages Center with a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Jan. 5. In addition to 21 new classrooms, the facility includes labs for forensic science, anthropology and languages. The center opened for winter quarter on Jan. 3.
Officials celebrate the dedication of a Habitat for Humanity home in Pasco on Dec. 17. Maung Aye and Lay Nay Paw, from left, join Max Clary, holding key, his mom Michelle Clary of Thrivent Financial in Kennewick, and Lisa Goodwin of Habitat for Humanity. Thirteen churches partnered with Thrivent Financial on the Apostles Build project. Construction began last summer, when church volunteers worked together to raise the walls. Each individual church then had its own week to volunteer. (Courtesy Thrivent Financial)
Spencer Pidcock, a client from The Arc of Tri-Cities, cuts a snowflake last month as part of the Washington State University Tri-Cities Peer Lunch Club. A class of 12 WSU Tri-Cities education students and adults with developmental disabilities share lunch, games and activities once a month to make friends and develop their professional and social skills. (Courtesy WSU Tri-Cities)
Hanford vitrification plant employees and Marines donated thousands of toys and nearly $29,000 for children in need through the Marine Corps Reserve’s Toys for Tots campaign on Dec. 8. Vit plant workers with contractors Bechtel National and AECOM designated $11,000 of the money to the Local 598 pipefitters’ annual Bikes for Tikes campaign to buy 500 bicycles and helmets for Toys for Tots. (Courtesy Bechtel National)
An eight-and-a-half-foot statue of Walter Clore, considered the father of Washington wine, was installed and dedicated Nov. 12 in front of the Walter Clore Wine and Culinary Center in Prosser. The Prosser Rotary Club spearheaded the fundraising effort for the bronze statue, created by artist Malcolm Phinney of the Phinney Gallery in Joseph, Oregon. Clore was a longtime Rotarian. (Courtesy Walter Clore Wine and Culinary Center)
The Tri-City Regional Chamber of Commerce’s annual elected leaders reception was Nov. 16 in Pasco. Those in attendance included: Top row, Jeff Losey, executive director, Home Builders Association of Tri-Cities; Pasco Mayor Matt Watkins; Brad Peck Franklin County commissioner; Lori Mattson, president and CEO of the regional chamber; Richard Bloom, West Richland councilman. Middle row, Mike McWhorter, commissioner, Kennewick Public Hospital District; Al Yenney, Pasco councilman; Rebecca Francik, Pasco councilwoman; John Hansens, Benton County coroner; Matt Boehnke, Kennewick councilman; Andy Miller, Benton County prosecutor; 9th District Rep. Mary Dye, 16th District Rep. Terry Nealey; Shawn Sant, Franklin County prosecutor. Bottom row, Lori Sanders, Benton PUD commissioner; Josh Lozano, district representative for Congressman Dan Newhouse; David Reeploeg, regional director for Sen. Maria Cantwell; Bob Hoffmann, Pasco councilman; Brenda Chilton, Benton County auditor. (Courtesy Tri-City Regional Chamber of Commerce)
American Ironworks workers held a “topping out” ceremony at Columbia Basin College on Dec. 2 for its new Wortman Medical Science Center in Richland. A topping out event is a builder’s rite held when the last beam or its equivalent is placed atop a structure during construction. Construction is scheduled to be completed by the end of May. The $17.7 million medical center is set to open in 2018. In addition to training CBC health care professionals in nursing, paramedic, EMT, medical assistant and fire science, the facility will be a functioning medical clinic treating patients through the Kadlec family medicine residency program. It will include 32 examinations and an X-ray room suite. The 72,000-square-foot medical center will include classrooms, simulation labs and computer labs. Kadlec donated $3 million toward the project. (Courtesy CBC)
The Kennewick Fire Department’s 2016 annual awards were presented last month to Ann Smith, EMT of the Year, from left; Eric Nilson, Officer of the Year; Ben Singley, Paramedic of the Year; and Tracy Rutledge, Firefighter of the Year. Award recipients were nominated based on their commitment to and demonstration of the city’s core values of integrity, inclusiveness, stewardship and communication. (Courtesy city of Kennewick)
Washington State University Tri-Cities students participated in a so-called “pop-up forum” on hate speech versus free speech Nov. 3 in the wake of concerns about Pullman students putting up a plywood wall on campus to show support for President-elect Donald Trump and his proposal to build a wall along the country’s southern border and Southridge High School’s spirit rock’s gay pride message being erased. Professors Robin Mays and Katie Banks facilitated the event and poet Jordan Chaney and his Urban Poet Society students gave a theatrical presentation on hate speech and how to rework responses to it. (Courtesy WSU Tri-Cities)
Tami Stokes of HiLine Engineering in Richland gets an autograph from retired Seattle Seahawks wide receiver Steve Largent, who is enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame, at the Boys & Girls Clubs of Benton and Franklin Counties’ 12th annual fundraiser, Dinner with Friends, on Oct. 20. The event raised more than $185,000. (Courtesy Boys & Girls Clubs of Benton and Franklin Counties)
The fourth annual Rising Above Cancer walk Oct. 22 on Badger Mountain raised $5,013 to support local cancer patients in need. More than 100 people came together with balloons in hand for the cause. All money raised benefited the nonprofit 21st Century C.A.R.E. Foundation and will stay in the Tri-City area. The foundation and Northwest Cancer Clinic in Kennewick hosted the event. (Courtesy 21st Century C.A.R.E. Foundation)
Steven Ashby, director of Pacific Northwest National Laboratory in Richland, speaks during the Oct. 14 dedication of the General Purpose Chemistry Laboratory and groundbreaking for the future PNNL Collaboration Center, a large new meeting facility. The buildings are part of PNNL’s 10-year campus renewal strategy to modernize facilities and infrastructure. (Courtesy PNNL)
Officials celebrated the $2 million Edison Street widening project, which stretched from Canal Drive to Clearwater Avenue, with a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Oct. 19. Pictured, from left, are: Jackie Aman, city of Kennewick, Skip Novakovich, Port of Kennewick, Rep. Larry Haler, Transportation Improvement Board Director Steve Gorcester, Benton County Commissioner Jim Beaver, Kennewick City Councilman Matt Boehnke , Kennewick Mayor Steve Young, Kennewick City Manager Marie Mosley, Kenewick Public Works Director Cary Roe, Kennewick police Cmdr. Craig Littrell, Kennewick Fire Chief Vince Beasley and Amy Lynch, city of Kennewick. (Courtesy city of Kennewick)
James Glynn, small business programs manager for the Army Corps of Engineers’ Walla Walla District, talks with more than 100 business owners and representatives who attended Industry Day on Oct. 13 in Walla Walla. The daylong event provided information about how to do business with the Corps, upcoming contract opportunities, competing for contracts and showcasing capabilities. The district awards contracts for construction projects, architect-engineering studies and supplies and services, which total $90 million to $130 million annually. The district operates and maintains six hydroelectric power facilities, four flood risk-reduction projects and $2.5 billion of infrastructure. (Courtesy Army Corps of Engineers)
Mission Support Alliance wildlife biologists released a rehabilitated barn owl back into the wild last month. The owl had been discovered by Hanford Site employees in late September on the ground in distress. The owl was sent to the Blue Mountain Wildlife Rehabilitation & Education Center in Pendleton, Oregon. It then was released back on the Hanford Site on Oct. 6. MSA’s Ecological Monitoring program is responsible for monitoring, managing, compliance and determining potential impacts to habitats, plants, birds and animals on the Hanford Site. Hanford is home to numerous species of animals such as elk, jackrabbits and more than 200 different species of birds, including owls and bald eagles. (Courtesy Mission Support Alliance)
Lourdes Health general surgeon Dr. Richard Shallman led a surgical team at the Pasco hospital in performing its first gallbladder surgery using a “single incision” procedure with a robotic surgical system in August. The patient’s gallbladder was removed through one tiny incision in the naval, leaving the patient with no visual scarring. Traditional laparoscopic gallbladder removal may leave three to five incisional scars. Dr. Shallman is one of a group of surgeons in the country who has received training to perform the surgery, and the only general surgeon in the Tri-Cities certified to perform single-site surgery, according to Lourdes.
Business professionals learned how to become effective leaders during Washington State University Tri-Cities’ first Leadership Academy from Sept. 19-23. Pictured, from left, are: Timothy Palacios and Becky Chamberlain of WSU Tri-Cities, Peter Diaz of CH2M Hill Plateau Remediation Company, H. Keith Moo-Young of WSU Tri-Cities, Matthew Klatt of Mission Support Alliance, Tracy Heidelberg of CH2M Hill, Ben Niebuhr of Energy Northwest, Joseph Estey of Mission Support Alliance and instructor M. Semi Bird of WSU Tri-Cities.
The Tri-Cities Cancer Center kicked off Breast Cancer Awareness Month with its annual Let’s Make Pink Just Another Color event Sept. 30. The event included lighting up the cancer center with 3,000 lights in honor of those affected by breast cancer and giveaways. From left are Cindy Doyle, TCCC foundation board member; Tim Doyle, TCCC Foundation vice president; Rob Ivey, account executive for Townsquare Media; Elizabeth McLaughlin, TCCC foundation director; and Phil Gallagher, TCCC foundation president.
Kadlec Regional Medical Center celebrated the opening of its River Pavilion Tower expansion project with a ribbon cutting ceremony Sept. 29. Pictured, from left, are Lucy Dole, patient family member; Wayne Martin, Kadlec Community Board; Nancy Dahlberg, Kadlec ICU manager; Kathy Christensen, Kadlec director of nursing services; Elaine Coutoure, Providence CEO, Eastern Washington, Montana region; Lane Savitch, Kadlec Health System Regional CEO; and Susan Stade, Kadlec ICU coordinator. Two of the tower’s new floors are open with two more opening this winter.
Tri-Cities’ Dutch Bros raised more than $10,000 on Buck for Kids Day on Sept. 29. Dutch Bros. shops in Pasco and Richland raised $6,001 and Dutch Bros. in Kennewick raised $4,782.12 for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Benton and Franklin Counties. The annual event, which typically falls on the first Friday of December, was held this year on National Coffee Day and $1 from every drink sold, company-wide, was donated to local groups working with children.
Malia Goes and Ryan Malecha of Lamb Weston speak to a student at the Washington State University Tri-Cities’ annual career fair Sept. 29. The event attracted students as well as alumni and community job seekers. The fair included a job posting board, interview room and student spotlight breakfast where select students gave a 60-second resúme pitch to employers.