2014 January | UNA Greater Seattle Chapter

United Nations Association Greater Seattle Chapter

State of the Chapter 2013

January 7th, 2014 by unaseattle

From Matthew Metz, President of the Board


2013 was a year of accomplishment and transition for UNA Seattle.  We hired our first executive director in nearly 20 years.  We held our largest and most important event of many years, the World We Want event at City University.  We co-presented a major event at the University of Washington Law School on the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disability.  We launched a monthly group, Club UN, to discuss human rights and other pressing international issues in a relaxed setting.  We had our best budgetary year for many years, finishing the year nearly $4,000 in the black.


More important than these accomplishments, we set a direction for the organization.    We will engage immigrant and refugee groups here in Seattle, using them as a bridge to the UN and to international communities around the world.  We will connect students and other volunteers with these organizations.    In our first achievement related to this new direction, we reached an agreement with Mission EDU, an organization launched by UNA Board Member Peinda Diop, dedicated to bringing computers for the first time to classrooms in Senegal.


We also had a lot of turnover on the board this year.  Three longtime UNA Seattle board members, Dick Blakney, Trevor Tate, and Camelia Ades, resigned from the board.   Dick served on the board for many years, including a term of President, and was the guiding force behind UNA’s advocacy for many years.  Trevor represented the organization ably both as chapter president and to the national organization in Washington, DC.   Camelia served as Vice President and played a major role in organizing many chapter events.


New on the board this year are George Gose, a local banker who is serving as Treasurer, and Abdul Yusuf, a leader of Seattle’s African community.  Also joining the organization this year was volunteer Chief Administrative Officer Octavia Hathaway, a local lawyer and community leader who provided an enormous boost to UNA by, among other things, editing our newsletter, revamping the website, and straightening out our bookkeeping.


In December, our interim Executive Director, Jennafer Cargill resigned, in order to take a position much closer to her home.   Jennafer served the organization ably in her six-month stint and we thank her for all the hard work.  We are presently involved in a new search for an executive director, and hope to have one hired by the end of January 2014.


UNA Seattle is making a push to become a major force in Seattle, connecting our local communities with the UN and other peoples around the world to address major world problems.  I wish to personally thank all of you who dedicated your time, money, and ideas to the organization, and to encourage you to keep working with us to make the UNA a mighty force for good.

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Joanne Dufour Presented With Eleanor Roosevelt Award

January 1st, 2014 by unaseattle
The Seattle Human Rights Commission held its annual Seattle Human Rights Day
observance at Town Hall on December 10, 2013, on the occasion of the 65th
anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

UNA Greater Seattle Chapter participated in the evening’s program by presenting
its annual Human Rights Award — newly renamed the Eleanor Roosevelt Award –
to Joanne Dufour, a Seattle-area educator and activist who has dedicated years of
effort to various United Nations programs, with a focus on promoting the Millennium
Development Goals, on advancing the peacekeeping efforts of the United Nations,
and on preventing genocide in Darfur.

UNA Seattle Board Member Eugene Martin presented the award, citing in particular
Joanne’s efforts at bringing the Millennium Development Goals into elementary and
secondary school classrooms through lesson plans, projects, and workshops for
social studies educators both in the Puget Sound region and at international conferences
of the National Council for Social Studies and other organizations.

Joanne, a former member of the UNA Greater Seattle Chapter’s board of directors, recently
relocated with her husband Jim to the New Orleans area.  She will be greatly missed by
all of her colleagues, who were pleased to see her work recognized with this year’s
Eleanor Roosevelt award.  Thank you, Joanne !
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