GHSF > Memos > Garfield Golden Grads, Laura Selznik
Conversation with Laura Selznik, Golden Grads Contact
July 3, 2002

Laura and five others started Golden Grads in 1987 (on the anniversary of her 50th reunion). She and other 1937 graduates wanted to do something to help the school, and had learned that many other schools (in other cites) had a "Golden" organization to celebrate their 50th year. The Ballard and Garfield Golden Grad organizations were started at the same time. (This organization is for those who attended Garfield 50 years ago, even if they did not graduate.)

They sent out letters to everyone in their class in January 1988. Their goal was to give scholarships to students in need. In the first three months they raised almost $4000.

They have an annual awards ceremony the last week of May or first week of June. Their 16th Golden Grads luncheon was held May 29th. They gave out 14 scholarships (10 at $2500 and the rest at $1000). They also have a Hall of Fame committee to give out plaques to grads that have done a lot of work in the community.

How they get names:
They work with the 50th alumni committees when they hold their reunions (currently they are working on class of 52 and 53); those committees give the Golden Grads the names & addresses of their alumni. (They currently have close to 2000 alumni names.)

They put out a newsletter twice a year (in April and October). Dues are $8/year (helps pay for newsletter); if grad does not join by October, they drop them off their mailing list. Once you are a Golden Grad, you can give money in memory of someone or just give straight to the scholarship fund. Everyone is recognized for their gifts in the newsletter. Their by-laws state that in case they no longer exist, the balance of their funds would go to the School Board to be allocated for scholarships to Garfield students, according to the Golden Grads criteria.

Laura thinks a Garfield Foundation would be great, and the idea has been brought up at Golden Grad Board meetings in the past. She will report to her Board about our Organizing committee at their next meeting (in July) and try and recruit a couple of folks to attend our August committee meeting (if that seems appropriate). In the meantime, I will report back to our Organizing committee about the Golden Grads, their mission and purpose.

-- Elisabeth Squires

Last updated Wednesday, July 3rd, 2002.
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