Friday Jun 5, 2015

"The 50th Anniversary of Northwest Center"

Bill Krueger

Strategic Relationship Officer Northwest Center

Scribe: Neil Bretvick Introduced by: Bob Holert

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in this issue:

Former Mariner pitcher Bill Krueger will share observations about the current Mariners’ season, as well as the 50th anniversary of Northwest Center and an upcoming event involving both organizations.  BBRC will induct its newest member, and 4 students from Sammamish High School will be awarded scholarships from the BBRC.

speaker program:

Bill Krueger was introduced by Brian Evison.

Bill first spoke about the current status of the Mariners, including highlights and struggles they are facing.  Comparing baseball to football, he emphasized attaining success in baseball required much patience, whereas in football, success can come seemingly overnight.  Noting patience may be wearing thin for many Mariners’ fans, he still sees starting pitching as a strong point for the team, and says fans should watch for the return of Paxton and Iwakuma to the lineup to give the team a boost.  He’s also been extremely impressed with Elias since he joined the rotation, and of course the solid starting performances from both Happ and Hernandez this season.

The offensive woes of the team have been perplexing, given the talent on the roster.  Bill believes newly acquired slugger Mark Trumbo should give the team an offensive boost, and hopefully, the remaining roster will begin to produce as their talent levels would indicate.

Bill turned the focus to Northwest Center, now in its 50th year.  The organization was started by a small group of parents in Seattle who were looking for activities and play dates for their children with special needs.  Out of this initial action was created Northwest Center to provide a place for these children to have quality interaction with their peers.   Through these parents’ actions came legislation allowing children with developmental disabilities to be educated with their peers.

Northwest Center now runs six to seven core businesses providing training for workers with disabilities.  Northwest Center works with industry to place these individuals in a working environment.  These individuals are very appreciative of their work opportunities, and in turn reliable employees to the businesses they serve.  Northwest Center will continue to work with businesses to find opportunities benefiting these individuals and the businesses they work for.

A fun way to support Northwest Center is attend a Mariners game on Sunday, July 26 at 1:10 PM.  A portion of the ticket proceeds will go to benefit Northwest Center.  Bring your glove and support Northwest Center, and the Ms!  For more information, visit

club business:

After President Wendi Fischer gave the morning welcome, Mitch Freedman led the Invocation and Pledge, followed by Girish Bhatia introducing visiting Rotarians and guests.

Tom Smith awarded BBRC scholarships to four students from Sammamish High School, with their principal and school staff members in attendance to support them.  Each student thanked the club, and gave a brief talk about their aspirations and choice of colleges.  Tom emphasized the Scholarship Committee’s and Rotary’s goals of “providing systemic and enduring change” and “positively impacting lives locally and abroad”.   Contact Tom Smith or other scholarship committee members for details of these scholarship awards.

New BBRC member Alex Chehab was inducted by president Wendi Fischer, who was also her co-sponsor along with Colleen Turner.  Alex’s classification is “Behavior Analyst”.  Alex, who lives in Kirkland, is a citizen of three countries, and speaks fluent French and conversational German and Italian.  It was on a trip to Tanzania in 1996 Alex became aware of service opportunities, helping with education efforts there.  Locally, Alex is involved with autism-related causes and raising awareness for behavior analysis.  Welcome to the BBRC, Alex!

John DeWater and Carmela Ramaglia gave an entertaining and brief talk about the upcoming Rotating The Wheel” celebration on July 26 at Maplewood Golf Course.  It will have a Roaring 20’s theme this year – Wendi’s Speakeasy”.  There is a link on the BBRC website to register.  Early registration is encouraged and discounted at $35 per person, so don’t delay, the price will go up to $50 soon!

Sergeant at Arms Tim Leahy announced that in honor of National Doughnut Day there would be no fines.  Mmm, donuts!

president’s thought for the week:

“Education is the most powerful weapon you can use to change the world” – Nelson Mandela.

About the Speaker

Bill Krueger will discuss NW Center and the celebration of their 50th Anniversary serving people of all ages with challenges in the Seattle area. Bill is a former Mariner pitcher and presently Senior Baseball analyst with ROOT Sports. He is also functioning as Strategic Relationship Officer for Northwest Center.