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About Wallowa County chieftain. (Enterprise, Wallowa County, Or.) 1943-current | View Entire Issue (Jan. 24, 2018)
Wallowa County Chieftain
minutes with ...
January 24, 2018
Phillip Ketscher, 55, of Joseph is probably known to many
as the regional credit manager for Zion Bank in Enterprise or
the owner and operator of a cattle concern or as the former
credit administrator for the Joseph Community Bank Branch
or as president of the Stockgrowers Scholarship Committee.
Ketscher graduated from Enterprise High School in 1980
and went on to get his degree in Agricultural Resource Eco-
nomics at Oregon State.
He met his wife Charity, daughter of Randy and Robin
Warner (managers of the Cove Christian Camp) on a blind
date in 2002 in Enterprise. They were married in 2003
and have two children. Their daughter, Emily Warnock
of Imnaha, is the wife of B.J. Warnock and mother of five
month-old Miles (who is the apple of Phillip’s eye). Their
son, Kobe, is a freshman in college studying business.
Charity is a professional photographer and farm wife
and Phillip, in true Wallowa County fashion, is also work-
ing multiple jobs. They are both members of the Wallowa
County Stockgrowers where Phillip serves on the Scholar-
Q. You’re a local boy married to a local girl, but
you’ve both been other places. So, why settle in
A. It’s a beautiful area and it’s rural and allows me to get
out and work with cattle and horses. And it’s a great place to
raise kids. There are great people here. You’re surrounded by
people you know and trust. I think it’s a slower pace here and
a small town constantly puts you in situations where you’re
working with a lot of the same people over and over — you
develop a closer relationships.
Q. What do you think Wallowa County has taught
A. I think Wallowa County teaches importance of hard work,
because you have to work hard to succeed here — and prob-
ably that you have to rely more on family. That brings us
Q. Can you recall the first book you checked out of
the library for yourself?
A. I don’t think I can, but I remember having “Animal Farm”
by George Orwell read to us by Mrs. Moore in fifth grade in
Enterprise. I thought the lessons in that book were applicable
to real life and showed what it could be like without fairness.
Q. Can you recommend a book you’ve read
A. Most of my reading is trade and agricultural periodicals.
Most of the time I’m so tired when I get home that reading a
book puts me to sleep pretty easily. My wife read me “Tem-
perance Creek: A Memoir” by Pam Royse (available at The
Bookloft in Enterprise) when we drove down to California to
visit relatives. That was a well-written book.
Victim’s Impact Panel another tool in fighting DUIs
By Steve Tool
Wallowa County Chieftain
An individual who pays
the fine on their DUI ticket
and attends alcohol educa-
tion classes hasn’t fulfilled all
of his or her legal obligation.
More often than not, judges in
Wallowa County Circuit Court
will mandate attendance at a
Victim’s Impact Panel.
It’s a two hour-class that
shows the ripple effect of drunk
driving accidents. Wallowa
County’s program has been in
place for several years, much
earlier than the 11-year tenure
of district attorney Mona Wil-
liams, who leads the program.
Williams said the program
is the result of the efforts of
Mothers Against Drunk Driv-
ing organization that came into
prominence in the ‘80s.
“The purpose of the pro-
gram is for people who have
been convicted or charged
with DUI to understand their
actions from the victim’s per-
spective,” Williams said.
The panel meets twice a
year and is timed in rotation
with Union County’s class so
that offenders have an oppor-
tunity to participate every
The panel rotates.
“A lot of times, we’ll have
one or two victims of an
actual crash or family mem-
bers of an actual crash,” Wil-
liams said. She added that she
has brought in victims or their
families from other counties to
The panel met on Jan. 18
with a new twist: Law enforce-
ment officers George Kohl-
hepp of the Enterprise Police
Department, Trooper Jus-
tin Goldsmith of the Oregon
State Police and Deputy Kevin
McQuead of the Wallowa
County Sheriff’s Office partici-
pated as panel members.
“Thursday night, our focus
wasn’t necessarily on the prime
victim of a crash but on the rip-
ple effect and how many vic-
tims there can be,” Williams
…our focus wasn’t
necessarily on the
prime victim of a
crash but on the
ripple effect and
how many victims
there can be.”
— Mona Williams
The officers and DA spent
much of the evening reviewing
local crashes that ended with
either fatalities or very serious
injuries. Photographs of the
crashes were also used, which
lent a somber atmosphere to the
meeting. Particularly sobering
were stories from the officers
of finding friends or children
they knew when responding
to a crash scene. Officer Kohl-
hepp related how he lost a step-
child to a drunken driver.
“Having them (the offi-
cers) there helped the audience
see them as people,” Williams
said. “They could also see how
genuine the officers were in
that they’re not out there just to
issue tickets. They’re out there
to keep people safe and keep
people from dying.”
She added that while telling
her story to DUI recipients, she
also tells them to think about
thanking the officers for saving
their lives or the lives of others.
The DA said the pan-
els don’t adhere to a formula
because some people man-
dated to attend have been
through the program before.
Not all who attend are required
to be there. For example,
guests or a parent accompany-
ing a juvenile who is mandated
to attend for drug or alco-
hol purposes can come along.
Neither parents or guests are
charged the standard $15
attendance fee because the
DAs office feels that support
for offenders is important.
“We’re trying to encourage
more people to attend,” Wil-
liams said. “If we can help to
educate the support people
then we’re doing something
for the offenders and the com-
munity as well.” She added
that some people in treatment
groups at the Wallowa Valley
Center for Wellness also attend
Christie Houston, the coun-
ty’s victim’s advocate, attends
all the meetings in addition to
being the coordinator for the
program. She obtains speak-
ers, checks the attendees in and
files all the paperwork with
the court as well as distributes
The county’s juvenile
department does not send teens
that may be traumatized by the
graphic nature of some of the
meetings, which can include
graphic testimony from vic-
tims or vivid photos from acci-
“It’s mainly driving-age
people,” Williams said. “We
try to be cognizant of how
some of this information might
While the program’s focus
is to combat drunk driving, its
mission has changed some-
what, according to Williams.
“We’re seeing so much
more with the legalization
of marijuana and other drug
use,” she said. “The fact is, a
person can be found guilty of
DUI without having consumed
In fact, at the Jan. 18 ses-
sion. law enforcement offi-
cers mentioned “double ought”
arrests. In other words, DUI
charges were filed against driv-
ers who may blow zero on a
breath test but still show signs
Both Williams and Houston
consider the program a success.
“I just read all the feedback
from this last meeting,” Hous-
ton said. “This was one of our
best ones, and I had a lot of
great feedback from people.”
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