The Mid-Columbia Health Foundation hosted their 12th and final Tradition of Compassion Philanthropy Awards at Freebridge Brewing on March 7.

Tradition of Compassion was created by the Health Foundation to ensure those that give their time, talent, and treasure for the community good are recognized. Over the years, the Health Foundation has honored hundreds of individuals, businesses and organizations for their philanthropic efforts, presenting a total of 58 outstanding volunteers, corporations, philanthropists and community service organizations with the Tradition of Compassion award.

“It has been a great privilege to highlight these amazing individuals and businesses and all of the outstanding work they do in our community,” said Celeste Hill-Thomas, executive director of outreach communication and the foundation for Mid-Columbia Medical Center. “It’s important for us to continue to elevate philanthropy in our community, so we will partner with The Dalles Area Chamber of Commerce and sponsor the philanthropy awards during the annual Distinguished Citizens awards banquet,” she added.

The Distinguished Citizens award banquet takes place each January, and like the Tradition of Compassion Awards highlights people in the community.

2019 awards

Terry Cobb of Dufur was named Outstanding Volunteer. Cobb volunteered for many years as an organizer of the Jerri Walker-DePriest Fund, which provides scholarships to graduates of Dufur High School, and her passion for cooking—coupled with her skill at serving large crowds—has been honed to perfection supporting the spaghetti feed and auction dinner fundraisers. A $250 donation was made by the Mid-Columbia Health Foundation to Celilo Cancer Center Fund in honor of Cobb’s sister Jacklyn Hallock.

Gary Denney Floor Covering received the Outstanding Philanthropic Corporation award. As a long-established, locally-owned and family run business, Gary Denney Floor Covering has supported nearly every local cause. Marcus Denney serves on the Northern Wasco Country Parks & Recreation Board, and his mother, Wendy Denney, donates a tree to the Festival of Trees each year with her sorority Xi Zeta. In 2018 she and her daughter-in-law Lindsay Denney also donated a mini tree for the festival. Lindsay is a volunteer member of the Randy Rood Memorial Scholarship, which interviews around 20 students each year. Over the last two years, they donated proceeds from their “Shop with a Cause” promotion to the Breast Health for Strong Families Program, providing free mammograms to women in need. A $250 donation was made by the Mid-Columbia Health Foundation to Evelyn Kaser Nursing Scholarship Fund in their honor.

Columbia Gorge CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates) received the Outstanding Community Service Organization award. CASA is a nonprofit organization that recruits, trains, and supports volunteers who make a difference in the lives of children. CASA was able to support children in 2018 through a toy and gift drive for Christmas. With assistance from the community, every child received brand new toys, gifts and clothing for Christmas.

A $250 donation was made by the Mid-Columbia Health Foundation to Wahtonka Community School in honor of CASA.

Joyce Powell-Morin received the Outstanding Philanthropist award. Powell-Morin’s strong belief in supporting humanitarian causes inspired her nomination. She consistently shows compassion, kindness, goodwill, generosity and charity to everyone she meets.  Though she has served on numerous boards and committees, Powell-Morin’s best gift is her presence at events and in the lives of those she comes in contact with.

A $250 donation was made to Home Fires Burning, Oregon Veteran Services, in Powell-Morin’s honor.

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