Friends of Pool 9 hosts volunteer appreciation dinner

John Verdon and Larry Quamme congratulate Natalie Baugher on her selection as Friends of Pool 9 Volunteer of the Year. Submitted photo.

Saturday, September 26 the Friends of Pool 9 (FOP9) held its annual meeting and volunteer appreciation dinner at TJ Hunter’s in Lansing. 154 Friends and guests moved around the perimeter placing bids on the 144 donor items.  Nancy Wortman (Annual Meeting Chairman) had solicited some unusual gifts for bidders. The “Boat Display Shelf” was constructed of oak and maple and built by staff and inmates at the Luster Heights facility, and drew over $400 for FOP9.
Pastor Kevin Smith (Lansing United Methodist Church) gave a blessing that incorporated the natural beauty of the Mississippi and the commitment of the volunteers. The annual meeting began with agency and corporate members being recognized by speaker Larry Quamme (FOP9 Secretary and Treasurer), followed by the minutes (2014) and financial report. Members were elected to serve on the Board of Directors until 2018. John Verdon gave the year in review, noting the activities and the 2,277 volunteer hours compiled in 2015. The group has recorded 26,154 volunteer hours in its ten years of existence.
Verdon also discussed the Driftless Area Education and Visitor Center building project (Allamakee County Conservation Board) at the Columbus property south of Lansing and the need for Friends of Pool 9 to be a leader in this fundraising effort. Larry Quamme presented Jeanie Carroll (ACCB member) with a $2,000 check and Sue English presented memorials for her husband Cliff English, in the amount of $1,675. Proceeds from the bike raffle of the New Belgium Brewing Company “Fat Tire Bike” will also go to the building project.
Rich King, Manager of the McGregor District U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, thanked volunteers for their efforts and contributions to make Pool 9 one of the best on the river. He presented volunteer pins: 100+ hours pins to Judy Anderson, Warren Coates, Jack Fink, Jim Kerndt, Kevin Quillin, Cheryl Walsh and Mit Wilde; 250+ hours pins to Dick Roeder, Russ Hagen, Bob Seeley and Jon Stravers; 500+ hours pins to Bruce ReVoir and Nancy Wortman.
Vice President Verdon presented the 2015 Volunteer of the Year award to Natalie Baugher for her exemplary efforts as a member of the Board of Directors since 2007, her involvement in numerous projects and activities and her recent selection as one of the twenty participants selected from the 260 Friends groups across the nation to attend the National Friends Academy in Shepherdstown, WV. Baugher thanked the Board and announced the beginning of a photo contest for 2015-2016 for children and adults; more information will be forthcoming later.
Tom Limbach (whose son Peter works for New Belgium Brewing Company, Fort Collins, CO and helped arrange the bike donation) drew the winning raffle ticket for Sue Russell. Winners of the silent auction items were reminded to pick up their treasures and everyone was thanked for their generous participation in the auction and for their continued support of Friends of Pool 9.

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