Evergreen Honors Former Alumni Association President

In March, more than 100 faculty, staff, students and alumni gathered to honor Bonnie Marie, former president of the Evergreen Alumni Association and longtime college staff member, who retired on March 31. After a long and courageous battle with cancer, Bonnie Marie passed away on May 25, 2008. She was an inspiration to us all.

“Bonnie’s contributions to Evergreen, to the Alumni Association and particularly to the finance and administration division have been enormous and passionate,” said John Hurley, vice president for finance and administration.

Bonnie being honored

Bonnie began her Evergreen career on September 18, 1972, as secretary to the dean of developmental services (later referred to as student services). In 1979, Bonnie took on the administrative assistant position, and also served as the alumni coordinator. Bonnie served on the Board of Directors of the Alumni Association from 2000-2007 and was elected president in June 2004. By virtue of being president, she served as liaison to the Board of Governors. In 2006, she also served as the college’s acting director of alumni relations.

“Bonnie helped orient me in many ways, and never turned me away when I asked for help, regardless of her own workload,” said current alumni relations director R.J. Burt. “She was the perfect mentor, colleague and friend.”
Bonnie Marie with Alumni Directors Past/Present

In June 2007, Bonnie asked to resign from the Alumni Board. Due to her many outstanding contributions, the Board members voted to change their bylaws to allow for a new “emeritus” category, offered only to those who have given extraordinary service with consistency and excellence over time. Bonnie was unanimously elected as the first emeritus board member.

“Bonnie never failed to deliver on any promises,” recalls former alumni relations director Scott Pinkston, who traveled from Tacoma to honor Bonnie. “I could always count on her to get things done, to get my back, and to gently let me know when I was slipping up. Bonnie took me aside and coached me and brought me up to speed on the history and traditions of Evergreen. To me, she embodies its spirit and ethos and core values.”

Although she left Evergreen in 1982 to work in private industry in Portland, Ore., she returned in the fall of 1999, and later joined the staff of the Student Teacher Technology Education Partnership as a program assistant. In 2002, Bonnie was hired as administrative assistant to the vice president for finance and administration.

Bonnie’s long and illustrious career with Evergreen, both as a volunteer and staff member, illustrate her love and dedication to the college.