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ACOMPREHENSIVE HISTORY OF APOYO

By Patricia Garrison, posted July 10, 2020

• 1995: APOYO starts distributing Northwest Harvest food out of parking lots
• 1998: At the urging of CWU’s Board of Trustees, CWU gives APOYO space in the basement of the Old Hospital on 3rd Avenue.
• 2001: After sale of the Old Hospital building, CWU gives APOYO space in the Old Heat plant between 7th Avenue and University Way (then 8th Avenue).
• May 2003: APOYO submits a Yearly Report that details who we are, what we do, how we’re organized, what partnerships we’ve established, what our focus is, and the results of a needs assessment survey we conducted among the Hispanic population of Ellensburg.
• February 2004: APOYO sends a letter to Rich Corona, VP for Business and Financial Affairs, explaining that the wording of APOYO’s contract needs to be revised to more accurately reflect what APOYO’s role is and to clarify misunderstandings and inconsistencies.
• June 2006: APOYO sends a report to Bruce Porter in Business Service & Contracts listing students who have received credit hours for projects related to APOYO.
• 2007: CWU Publishes a “South Neighborhood Planning Study.”
• June 2008: APOYO submits an annual report to Business Service and Contracts documenting the level of student participation in terms of credit hours earned and public service requirements fulfilled.
• June 2009: CWU receives a Pre-Design Study submitted by INTEGRUS Architecture out of Spokane. The idea is to [transform] the Old Heat Plant into a vibrant, active Welcome Center” that would include offices for “Alumni Relations and Human Resources.” APOYO was never made aware of these plans.
• January 2009: James Gaudino becomes CWU president
• May 2010: APOYO submits a report detailing how our 2009-10 activities and accomplishments meet specific goals of CWU’s 2006-2011 Strategic Plan.
• June 2011: APOYO submits a similar report that updates our accomplishments and activities.
• June 2012: APOYO submits a similar report that updates our accomplishments and activities.
• June 2013: APOYO submits a similar report that updates our accomplishments and activities.
• June 2014: APOYO submits another report to Stuart Thompson, Director of Contracts and Procurement, detailing how APOYO’s activities and accomplishments meet the goals of CWU’s Strategic Plan.
• October 31, 2014: Linda Schactler begins to argue that APOYO must document that it provides a benefit to the university. As if the previous annual reports didn’t document any benefit.
• January 2015: APOYO signs a reworded contract with CWU that brings back the language of “structured credit-hour-gaining internships” and restricts APOYO’s space in Old Heat.
• February 2016: We begin to hear rumors that we may have to leave Old Heat. We start working behind the scenes to shore up support. We write to Keith Champaign.
• July 1, 2016: APOYO signs a Memo of Understanding with the Center for Leadership and Community Engagement (CLCE) which superseded the previous contract and stipulated that the MOU would be reviewed no later than three years from its effective date. Keith Champagne, the African American Associate Dean who drafted the MOU is subsequently demoted and transferred to PE. This was commonly viewed as retaliation, with administrators making remarks such as, “Who does he think he works for?” (He subsequently resigned and took a position at the University of Alaska.)
• July 1, 2016: Dean of Student Success Sarah Swager requests a meeting to discuss moving APOYO to a new location in an old building – the Brooklane house. We have reservations.
• July 27, 2020: Bill Yarwood sends us a Lease Agreement to sign, but it says nothing about repairs to the Brooklane house. We refuse to sign it. Sarah Swager presents us with an identical document, which we also refuse to sign. We ask to meet with Gaudino.
• August 23, 2016: Kandee Cleary arranges a meeting but has questions.
• August 26, 2016: We write to Gaudino to point out our achievements and clarify our needs.
• August 30, 2016: We meet with Gaudino, who explains that because of a law against “gifting” of public funds to corporate entities and/or individuals, he can make only limited repairs to the Brooklane house. He shows us a document titled Funding Levels to explain that, while “gifting” is illegal, he can give us some level of funding.
• September 8, 2016: After much discussion, we decide to meet to discuss whether to accept Gaudino’s offer or not. Fears over the current political climate finally tip the balance.
• September 23, 2016: We write a letter accepting Gaudino’s offer.
• October 10, 2016: APOYO signs a Facilities Use Agreement that includes repairs to the house.
• October 2016: CWU personnel move our stuff into the Brooklane house.
• October 11, 2016: President Gaudino touts our move into the Brooklane house as a “win-win-win,” adding, “it protects our community members who rely on the valuable services APOYO provides. It maintains the hands-on learning and volunteer opportunities available to our students. And it preserves a long-standing partnership between CWU and APOYO.”
• November 7, 2016: We ask Bill Yarwood if we will be able to open APOYO on the 9th.
• November 22, 2016: We inform Bill Yarwood that the grounds maintenance crew has been taking food, bottled water and clothing from the food bank. (They come in through a shared bathroom.) One of them left a tape measure behind.
• November 29, 2016: We inform Bill that somebody left our kitchen window open and left a couple of messes on the floor.
• December 2-10, 2016: We report to Bill that the kitchen light shorted out, that the parking lot is very dark, and that the front steps could use a handrail.
• January 9-February 6, 2017: We hassle with Bill and facilities management to get them to plow out our parking area.
• May 1, 2017: Philip writes Manuel Rodriguez asking for help unloading our delivery truck.
• May 15, 2017: Philip writes Manuel Rodriguez asking for help unloading our delivery truck.
• May 2, 2017: Our insurance agent sends us a questionnaire about the Brooklane house. She has been used to sending proof of our insurance to CWU Business Services & Contracts for years.
• June 6, 2017: Our insurance agent writes Shellie Snyder in Business Services & Contracts to verify our address at 18th Avenue and Brook Lane. She also wants to know the year the house was built and the condition it’s currently in.
• July 10, 2017: Our insurance agent sends us a certificate of liability.
• July 11, 2017: Our insurance agent wants to know about what’s in our storage containers.
• July 13, 2017: Philip emails Bill Yarwood to find out when CWU is going to start picking up our garbage.
• October 31, 2017: Philip asks CLCE’s Elizabeth Vidaurri if she can send some students to help unload a truck. She says she has sent an email to students, and she asks about revamping our Facebook page.
• November 11, 2017: A CWU student, Ayla Medina-Ulloa, asks about volunteering for APOYO
• December 15 – February 12, 2017: Philip, Stefanie, Jessica Hernandez and Liz Vidaurri discuss a holiday Valentine party for APOYO kids. Problems arise when clients don’t know where the party is on campus.
• February 14, 2018: Philp informs Bill Yarwood that we have mice.
• March 30, 2018: Liz Vidaurri agrees to send a message to the Chavez-King students for truck-unloading. She says she will be there to help.
• May 2, 2018: Our insurance company sends someone to inspect the Brooklane house and finds it to be in “average” condition and insurable.
• August 3, 2018: We ask Bill Yarwood for an air conditioner.
• August 20, 2018: Bill Schafer, Interim Dean for Student Success, asks us to coordinate with Andre Dickerson and Elizabeth Vidaurri to formulate a Student Engagement Plan of Action.
• August 29, 2018: We meet with Andre Dickerson and Elizabeth Vidaurri to formulate a Plan of Action. This is the first time CWU has made a concerted effort to recruit students to volunteer at APOYO.
• September 9, 2018: We continue to refine a definite Plan of Action with Andre Dickerson.
• September 26, 2018: We meet Andre and Elizabeth at the APOYO food bank. The Plan of Action is finalized before the start of Fall Quarter, 2018.
• September 2018 through March 2020: the Center for Leadership and Community Engagement (CLCE) begins sending student volunteers to APOYO, along with roll sheets for them to sign, and APOYO sends those signed roll sheets back to CLCE (correspondence & roll sheets will be available
on the APOYO Google Docs folder).
• November 1, 2019: Peggy Morache of FISH phones us requesting a meeting. She doesn’t say what it is about.
• November 8, 2019: We met with Peggy at 10:00 am. She says she wants to offer us a space within the FISH warehouse for APOYO, since APOYO’s lease with CWU is not being renewed. We are pretty surprised. During that meeting, she contacted Joel Klucking, CWU VP for financial Affairs, saying she thought we had already been notified.
• November 15, 2019: John Littel meets with Peggy Morache of FISH. She said she met with CWU VP for Financial Affairs Joel Klucking, who told her that CWU was ending APOYO’s lease, citing three previously referenced talking points: “no value to CWU, decrepit house, they can merge with FISH.”
• November 26, 2019: At the suggestion of Bill Yarwood (Director, Facilities Planning & Construction Services), Philip meets with Dean Heinselman, who tells Philip that nothing about APOYO’s eviction has been decided yet – that the issue is still with the President’s Council.
• December 18, 2019: John Littel sees Linda Schactler at a social event. She cited the same talking points, adding that the decision had been made months before at the cabinet level.
• January 14th: Dean Heinselman’s eviction letter is sent. We receive it on the 17th.
• January 23, 2020: APOYO holds a strategy meeting to figure out how to deal with CWU’s “talking points.” John Littel outlines the talking points and suggests we meet with the Board of Trustees as soon as possible. A story in the Ellensburg Daily Record says APOYO could be homeless by June 2020.
• January 24, 2020: Philip & Patricia meet with Tristen Lamb, Public Health Administrator for Kittitas County, at the Public Health building on Nanum to discuss the possibility of moving APOYO into their empty basement. She needs permission from the City Council.
• January 25, 2020: 35 students show up to volunteer at APOYO; film editing students start making a documentary about APOYO.
• January 27, 2020: ASCWU Students pass resolution in support of APOYO.
• January 28, 2020: Philip and Patricia meet with Dean Heinselman, Peggy Morache and Kremiere Jackson, CWU VP for Public Affairs. Dean Heinselman claims total responsibility for the decision, saying he is not bound by the MOU we signed with CLCE. Peggy tells us the County Commissioners will not allow us to use the Public Health building because we can’t keep food down there. (We don’t know if this is true, or how Peggy would know if it was or not; we have since heard that the Commissioners have suspended all such decisions due to the pandemic.) We leave the meeting, rejecting FISH’s offer to “take us in” because we don’t think all our clients will go to FISH. A fair number are from out of county, and FISH won’t serve them.
• January 30, 2020: Angry, FISH withdraws its offer to “take us in” and proceeds to start a campaign to convince the Ellensburg community that, by expanding its services, FISH can replace us. FISH hands out a survey to its clients asking (in English and Spanish) if they are clients of APOYO, what they “shop” for at APOYO, and what they can get from APOYO that they can’t get from FISH. Peggy argues that all APOYO’s clients already come to FISH anyway.
• February 5, 2020: Supporters bring up the issue of APOYO at the faculty senate meeting. Various faculty and departments sign letters in support of APOYO.
• February 9, 2020: APOYO writes to President Gaudino asking for a meeting with him and, subsequently, the Board of Trustees. We get no response.
• February 10, 2020: Veronica Gomez-Vilchis, a Diversity Advocate & Outreach Specialist who works under Kandee Cleary, contacts Veronica Acevedo, APOYO’s Vice President, inviting her to a meeting that includes Vilchis and Gregg Heinselman. Purpose: to discuss what might be best for the mexicano community in Ellensburg. Our VP insists the APOYO President and Secretary should be involved. Subsequently, the meeting is cancelled.
• February 12, 2020: In a letter to John Littel, Kandee Cleary claims that “President Gaudino was unaware of the decision [to evict APOYO] until he read about it in the Daily Record.” She further states, “The only contact with the President’s office has been to schedule the time with the Board of Trustees,” which “has taken any decision making ability out of the President’s hands.” This, despite the fact that our February 9th letter was addressed to HIM.
• February 12, 2020: In response to a query from Jim and Joan Cortese, Nancy Lilquist, (Ellensburg City Council), contacts “people” at CWU and reports CWU’s talking points in support of FISH.
• February 20, 2020: We write a memo to the Board of Trustees, pointing out how APOYO fulfills a core theme of the CWU strategic plan and provides opportunities, not just for students, but for faculty, to interact and build trust with a vulnerable minority community.
• February 20-21, 2020: The Board of Trustees meet in Des Moines and decide to postpone any decision about APOYO until they meet in Ellensburg May 14-15, reasoning that it wouldn’t be appropriate to make a decision from afar that directly impacted the Ellensburg community.
• March 8, 2020: In preparation for the May 14-15 BOT meeting, we try to talk to the Trustees through a back channel. Rumor has it they’re not happy with Gaudino.
• May 17, 2020: Linda Schactler, Gaudino’s Chief of Staff, receives a response from FISH’s Peggy Morache, claiming, in essence, that FISH can replace APOYO – no problem.
• May 27, 2020: President Gaudino writes a letter to APOYO, claiming that the decision to give us an extra two months was made by Board Chair Ron Erickson, while claiming that the BOT seldom “concern[s] itself with the details of administration,” choosing “to [delegate] the operation of campus facilities to university staff.”
• May 31, 2020: Kremiere Jackson, CWU’s Public Affairs Office, spreads misinformation in response to a query from El Sol journalist America Barcelo. She also sends the reporter a copy of Peggy Morache’s letter.
• June 6, 2020: Presumably in response to several letters to the editor in support of APOYO, President Gaudino writes a letter to the Daily Record claiming that he and Board Chair Ron Erickson jointly decided to give APOYO an extra two months to move from the Brooklane house, citing its deteriorating condition and FISH’s offer to provide space – an offer FISH rescinded in January 2020.
• June 11, 2020: APOYO responds with a guest editorial detailing how Gaudino forced us into a building he already knew was scheduled for demolition with promises to fix it up, then changed the terms of the lease to rescind that promise, all the while claiming FISH could feed our clients.
• June 22, 2020: APOYO secures legal representation.
• June 26, 2020: APOYO receives a letter from VP of Operations Andreas Bohman requesting details of our move-out plan.
• July 8, 2020: Andreas Bohman Zooms with APOYO’s board to find out what our needs are. First, we need somewhere to move to. He promises to talk to CenterFuse et. al., has no authority to extend our deadline.

MAILING ADDRESS
111 Peavine Rd.
Ellensburg, Washington 98926

HOURS
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CONTACTS
Email: garrisop2001@yahoo.com
Phone: (509) 925-1141
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