Arthritis Foundation honors supporters

The North Puget Sound Branch of the Arthritis Foundation recently honored several people, businesses and agencies for their support: Cay Earle Outstanding Volunteer Award, to Cheryl Bowers; Quality of Life Award, to Kim Epoch and Vince Sanchez of the St. Joseph Hospital Center for Rehabilitation; Helping Hand Award, to Amber Uhlhorn of the Bellingham Police Department; St. Joseph Hospital Community Partner Award, to Business Bank; Corporate Sponsor Award, to Botanical Laboratories Inc.; Charity Golf Classic & Dinner Auction Volunteer, to Jenny Anderson and Jane Major of Puget Sound Energy; North Puget Sound Branch Award, to Laurie Schepper of Bristol-Meyers Squibb; Inspiration Award, to Lee Willis; Jingle Bell Run/Walk Team Challenge Award, to St. Joseph Hospital; Skagit Volunteer, to Karen Pitt of Business Bank.

Fairhaven Middle School seventh-graders Brendan Friesen and Jack Melhorn finished in third place at the National Engineering Society’s Future City regional finals in Seattle in January. Students had to design a future city using a computer simulation, write an abstract about their city, write a research paper on how water can best be recycled, build a three-dimensional model of their futuristic city, and give an oral presentation to a team of engineers.

Fairhaven Middle School seventh-grader Zach Hartman won first place in the Barnes & Noble Martin Luther King essay contest in January. His speech/poem, “We Shall Overcome,” was chosen from middle and high school entries throughout Whatcom County.

Sehome High School student Trevor Mauro and other Whatcom County students on the Construction Careers Academy team won first place in the Washington State Construction Challenge competition, in Bellevue. The team will travel to Tennessee in May for the championships.

Fairhaven Middle School teacher Stephanie Strow and Sehome High School teacher Janae Hodge each received a mini-grant for classroom projects from the Whatcom County School Retirees Association. Strow received $100 to buy classroom books; Hodge received $150 to buy Spanish-language games.

Bellingham Bay Rotary Club donated $4,000 to Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Services to support legal advocacy services, and $1,750 to Bellingham Childcare & Learning Center to buy computers.

The Whatcom County Library System has elected officers chairs for 2009: Nina Cox is chair, Janneth Hunter is vice chair, and Janet Boyhan is secretary. Tom Burton and Deb Lambert are also on the five-member board.

U.S. Air Force Airman Julian Pfister has graduated from basic training at Lackland Air Force Base, San Antonio. He is the son of Alexander Pfister of Everson and a 2008 graduate of Meridian High School.

U.S. Marines PFC James Dyrk Hall of Ferndale, son of Mark and Donna Hall, has graduated from boot camp at Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego.

Hannah Higgins, Phil Sharpe and Peggy Zoro have been confirmed by the state Senate as Western Washington trustees.

Ruby Machado, 15, of Bellingham served as a page in the state Senate. Machado was sponsored by Sen. Kevin Ranker, D-San Juan Island.

Nicole Wakabayashi and Nigel Packer were winners at the annual piano competition sponsored March 12 by the Bellingham Chapter of the Washington State Music Teachers Association. Wakabayashi is a junior at Squalicum High. Packer is a senior at Bellingham High. Both will represent Bellingham at the association’s state conference in Yakima in June.

Whatcom Community College students Anna Pilon and Mark Jordan were named to the 2009 All-Washington Academic Team representing WCC. Each will receive about $750 in scholarships sponsored by KeyBank of Washington and the Northwest Education Loan Association.

Sophia Sennett, a sophomore at Blaine High School, was a page in the state Senate. She was sponsored by Sen. Dale Brandland, R-Bellingham.

U.S. Air Force Airman Benjamin De Boer graduated from basic training at Lackland Air Force Base, San Antonio. He is the son of Julie and Bill De Boer of Lynden and a 2007 graduate of Lynden High School.

Sehome High School students performed act one of “Brighton Beach Memoirs” and won the 2009 Best of Fest trophy at the Washington State Thespian Convention, held at Western Washington University. Also, Sehome students Phoebe Wahl, Emma Cowan-Young and Ben Phillips won first place in the group acting category. These students placed in the top 10 percent at the competition: Elysse Laskey, monologue; Phoebe Wahl and Ben Phillips, duo acting; and Ben Phillips, pantomime.

Scott Vander Laan was named to the dean’s list at Calvin College, in Grand Rapids Mich. A senior in electrical and computer engineering, he is a graduate of Lynden Christian High School.

Richard Walter of Lynden graduated from U.S. Marines boot camp. The son of Carolyne Walter and Richard Walter, he is a 2007 graduate of Lynden High School.

Several Bellingham students were named to the winter term honor roll at Oregon State University, in Corvallis: William Moore, freshman; Bo Neilan, freshman; Chelsea Parker, sophomore; Michael Schmidt, senior; and Evan Slodysko, freshman.