Our Orcas Operations Committee is adapted to Orcas needs. The Senior Center nonprofit began as a grass-roots movement in the mid-1970s, when choices were very limited for seniors or those with disabilities who faced increasing care needs. The Senior Services Council founders felt strongly that island living should not mean having to leave the community for care or services.
Many from the Orcas community worked on projects such as the Orcas Longhouse (non-profit senior apartments) and applications for federal and state grants to provide transportation, case management, congregate and home-delivered meals, and in-home services. The Senior Center nonprofit works in collaboration with San Juan County and the Council on Aging to support the Nutrition program as well as monetarily supports the San Juan County facilitated transportation program to ensure services as contractually obligated.
Five new Operations Committee members are elected each year by Senior Center members, as five others rotate off the group. The Operations Committee meets once a month. Three representatives from Orcas are elected by their fellow committee members to the Senior Services Council, comprising Orcas, San Juan, Lopez, and Shaw. The Council meets four times a year.
The Operations Committee currently meets on the second Thursday of each month at 10:00 a.m. at the Senior Center. Each member serves a 3-year term and 5 new members are elected every year in November; their terms begin in January of the following year. Ballots are available in the November newsletter.
If you are interested in participating in Operations Committee activities at the Senior Center, please contact us at (360) 376-7929.
2019 Operations Committee Members
Bonnie Burg – Chairperson
Lynnette Wood – Vice-Chair
John Carl – Treasurer
Margo Rubel – Secretary
Christina Orchid - Non-voting Member
Bonnie Burg LICSW, BCD is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker with a private psychotherapy practice in Eastsound. She has been sitting on the Operations Committee for 2 years and is currently serving as the Vice Chair. She believes that service to our companions in life is a benefit to all of us. She hopes to continue giving time, ideas and humor to the Senior Center until she is of a very mature age.
Maggie Kaplan. Maggie is the Chair of the Senior Services Council of San Juan County, Inc. Nonprofit Board serving all three Senior Centers in San Juan County.
John Carl, OSC Treasurer.
A longtime Iowan, John moved to Orcas four years ago to be closer to his daughter's family in Seattle. He is a graduate of Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa and Michigan State University in East Lansing, Michigan. John was involved in the radio station business at several locations in the upper Midwest. He has been involved in many community activities and served on several boards including County Conservation, Savings and Loan, church, Economic Development, and more.
On the island, John is currently serving on the Orcas Island Community Foundation Board, Orcas Community Resource Center Board of Directors, Senior Center Operations Committee, and is a member of Kiwanis Club of Orcas Island.
Margo Rubel, "I have lived on Orcas for about 28 years. I have worked on the Operations Committee for the last four years. I would like to continue to assist in making our Senior Center an active and thriving place, meeting the needs - intellectual, social, physical - of our aging population, so that as we become elders in our community, there is a place to help us navigate the changes in us. I would like to help in making the Senior Center the place "to go to."
Lynnette Wood. After a successful career that included more than 20 years of foreign aid work, Lynnette Wood retired to live full time on Orcas Island, where she and her husband have owned property since 1986. She has served on both County and Orcas-based boards and committees over the last eight years, and on the Orcas Senior Center Operations Committee for the last year. Prior to joining the Operations Committee, she drew on her professional experience in survey research to lead the "Aging Well on Orcas Island" survey in 2017, and has since worked with Orcas Senior Center staff to advance services that address some of the key issues identified in that survey; these include designing and facilitating a focus group to explore the viability of potential means for providing home maintenance services and helping to launch the new "Meeting of the Minds" lecture series. She is committed to continuing to serve and contribute in ways that improve the quality of life on Orcas Island.
Jerry Todd is our vehicle care extraordinaire! He ensures our vehicles are safe and well-maintained at all times, sometimes appearing at the drop of a hat when a last minute need arises. He pays a key role on the Operations Committee supporting the transportation offerings are available for our islands elders. Jerry has served on the Operations Committee since 2014 and has been nominated to serve another term.
Margot Shaw came “home” to Orcas in 2002 to retire after having been away for 40 years. Upon arrival, she dove into volunteer work and satisfies her creative side with music & photography. She was on the Historical Society board for 3 years, president for one. While anxious to create “links” between other Orcas organizations and the Senior Center, Margot also envisions the Senior Center as a “go to” place for the whole island community.