Cass’ Corner | April 2014


The highs and lows of the thermometer recently remind me of life’s ups and downs. While last week we thought we were facing an early summer, this week families have turned their heat back on. In our recent all staff meeting, our staff shared the high’s and lows of their lives, from amazing work successes, to personal victories, to disappointments and events of change.  All of this is part of life of course, but certainly there are moments deserving of appreciation of the good times, and belief that the challenges can ultimately make us more versatile, more experienced, and ultimately stronger.

We look forward to a great month. On April 12th, we will watch as young children and their families visit Fire Station 20 to see fireman demonstrations, eat pancakes, and receive much needed immunizations, all thanks to our Women’s Leadership Council. That night, the community will convene for dinner 1 of the latest season of Project Dinner Table, downtown, at the Downtown Grand. Tax season is wrapping up and we are making great strides in preparing taxes to families making $52,000 or less through our VITA program. Please tell family and friends about this amazing service!

We have just closed our collective impact RFP process. This is essentially a call for proposals to our community for program partners who believe they can fulfill the community impact goals around Health, Education and Financial Stability. We are always moved by the quality program providers we have, and with the passion by which they operate. We are reviewing the RFP’s and look forward to continuing to offer high quality programs in the key impact areas in the next fiscal year.

Next week, United Way Worldwide will be visiting us to shoot video for their national film. They loved our work in preschools and in Martinez health clinic, citing them as excellent examples of community impact. This past week, we have seen several of our workplace campaigns doing amazing things. Kohl’s employees gave up a Saturday morning to make custom CRT “Inspiration Kits” for students who are getting ready to take their CRTs. Can you imagine what it will be like when these children open their kits, and find a breakfast bar, a note of encouragement, and some symbolic treasures? Norgren Kloehn employees came together this week to create a community garden at Mabel Hoggard Elementary, a magnet school. And Boyd Gaming will soon embark on a T-Shirt contest during which their employees have the chance to get creative by designing a custom T-shirt, all for good.

We are also gearing up for our “Pay It Forward” week, and we thank community retail partners for joining. Special thanks to Stitched; Tropical Smoothie; Tasti D-Lite; Pinto Ranch Fine Western Wear; Michele C. Quinn Fine Art, LLC; Artifact; Core Studios; Pizza Rock; Sambalatte and Gritz Café. Get ready to eat, shop and indulge, all for good! And we hope to see you out at Tivoli Village dining for the “Get Happy For Charity” dine-around on the evening of Monday, May 19th.

As we move into Spring, and closer to summer, we eagerly anticipate a great June with new graduates crossing the finish line on their way to a good life. These are the moments to celebrate, and to take pause, as the true “ups” that come with working to advance the common good. Every success story comes with a feeling of personal satisfaction for me, and for every person who touches the work we do. Best wishes to you.


In friendship,


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