Chelsea White/Red Cross Cascades Region
The Central Oregon Chapter of the Cascades Region recently welcomed two new board members and although they are new to the board, they each have around six years of experience volunteering with the Red Cross, remarkable backgrounds that will contribute to the success of the mission, and the passion to do it.
Emily Kirk’s introduction to the Red Cross occurred long before she started volunteering. Emily often accompanied her mom while she donated blood at the Portland donation center and fondly recalls her mother’s inspiring generosity and “of course, the cookies afterwards”. So when it was Emily’s turn to donate, not only did she jump on signing up, she started organizing blood drives in high school and continued to donate throughout community college and at University of Oregon. Although her first donation was not the best experience, its silver lining was that she learned she was borderline anemic and upon correcting her iron levels with supplements, she was able to learn better health practices and increase her energy levels early on, as well as be able to donate blood in the future. She continues to volunteer as a Blood Donor Ambassador and donate at the Central Oregon center.
Emily Bon also learned about the Red Cross as a child from her mom. “My mother’s a teacher and I learned all about the amazing women that have shaped our history like Clara Barton.” Emily later joined the American Red Cross in Washington D.C. while she was getting her master’s degree in emergency and disaster management at Georgetown University. Emily signed up to volunteer on the Disaster Action Team and after taking several trainings and meeting with many different Red Cross representatives, she “got a nice look at all the different services that the Red Cross does for the community that is extremely important”.
Both Emilys are excited about joining the board to contribute to all the vital services the Red Cross provides to those in need. Emily Kirk believes there is a place for everyone at the Red Cross, whether they are donating blood or volunteering just a couple hours per month, they can get involved and be part of this support. Emily Bon is inspired not only by the Executive Director in Central Oregon, but also by the diverse board that will allow for different ideas and opinions to help those in need. She also says “we’re really fortunate that both Emilys that came in are passionate, energetic women”. Emily Kirk says she sees her new position on the board as “a way I could use my powers for good”.
From Clara Barton, to inspirational mothers, to the two Emilys, the Red Cross is powered by the leadership of strong, passionate women and we are happy to welcome them on the Central Oregon board.