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Foundation fetes compassion winners

The Mid Columbia Health Foundation presented four philanthropy awards during the 2014 Tradition of Compassion celebration Thursday night in The Dalles. Award recipients, pictured left to right, are Heather Haugen, James Beedie and Debbie McBain of the Moose Lodge and Women of the Moose, who received the outstanding community service organization award; Lana Tepfer, who received the outstanding philanthropist award; Marilyn Wong, who received the outstanding volunteer award and David Griffith of Griffith Motors, who received the outstanding philanthropic corporation award.

The Mid Columbia Health Foundation presented four philanthropy awards during the 2014 Tradition of Compassion celebration Thursday night in The Dalles. Award recipients, pictured left to right, are Heather Haugen, James Beedie and Debbie McBain of the Moose Lodge and Women of the Moose, who received the outstanding community service organization award; Lana Tepfer, who received the outstanding philanthropist award; Marilyn Wong, who received the outstanding volunteer award and David Griffith of Griffith Motors, who received the outstanding philanthropic corporation award. Photo by Mark Gibson.

The Mid-Columbia Health Foundation feted the Tradition of Compassion honorees March 7 and gave them a preview of things to come by hosting the event at the Fort Dalles Readiness Center, which will be officially dedicated later this spring.

Here is some of what the foundation had to say about this year’s honorees.

Marilyn Wong, Outstanding Volunteer: When people in The Dalles want to “start something” they call on Marilyn Wong. Wong volunteers for American Cancer Society, Relay for Life and March of Dimes; just to name a few. She is the chairperson for the Fred Meyer local charity committee; getting grants for schools, Meals on Wheels and other nonprofits to help educate, feed and fund good activities in our community.

Lana Tepfer, Outstanding Philanthropist:

Lana Tepfer is “An Unsung Hero” because she truly exhibits the true meaning of “giving” and embracing her community. Tepfer is involved in Master Gardeners. She teaches free classes at Columbia Gorge Community College and donates time to gardening projects on the juvenile facility of the regional jail grounds and The Dalles Imagination Garden. Every year she buys school supplies for needy children and donates them to Salvation Army, HAVEN and foster homes. She also donates dresses for girls in Africa organization called “Little Dresses for Africa.” She made over 100 dresses in 2013 alone. She also sews scarves every winter and drops them off at HAVEN.

Griffith Motors – Outstanding Philanthropic Corporation: David Griffith, owner of Griffith Motors is continually donating to the community with vehicles, money and personal time. Griffith gives of himself willingly. He is viewed by many in this community as an asset. He has given his own frequent flyer miles to a local school each year for several years now as part of their annual fundraising event. Although he does not have children of his own, he continues to financially support most all youth activities in this community. Griffith Motors sponsors the Sorosis Park Easter Egg Hunt and Christmas Toy Drive for Children of National Guard Soldiers. Griffith volunteers his time to be an auctioneer for non-profit benefit fundraisers.

Moose Lodge and Women of the Moose – Outstanding Community Service Organization: The Moose Lodge is not just a social club. It supports community activities locally and nationwide. Big Brother’s Breakfast with Santa ensures that children get a Christmas here in The Dalles. This includes gifts for up to 40 children. They also provide local education scholarships.

Dedicated in July 1913 by the Moose fraternal organization, MOOSEHEART cares for youth whose families are unable, for a wide variety of reasons, to care for them. Some have lost one or both parents; others are living in environments that are simply not conducive to healthy growth and development. Whatever the reason, the men and women of the Moose, through their generosity and volunteerism, furnish the resources necessary to care for children in need. The Moose fraternity provides children with a wholesome home-like environment and the best possible training and education.

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