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About Smoke signals. (Grand Ronde, Or.) 19??-current | View Entire Issue (June 15, 2021)
JUNE 15, 2021
Food Bank news yesteryears
The Grand Ronde Food Bank – iskam mfkhmfk haws – is operated
by Marion-Polk Food Share, which has been leading the fight to end
hunger since 1987 because no one should be hungry.
Recipients of SNAP, TANF, SSI or LIHEAP assistance automat-
ically qualify for assistance at the Grand Ronde Food Bank, 9675
Grand Ronde Road. No one will be turned away in need of a food box.
“We believe that everyone deserves to have enough to eat,” Food
Bank Coordinator Francene Ambrose says. “You are welcome to get
a food box at each of our regular weekly distributions. No one will
be turned away in need of a food box.”
In reaction to the continuing COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, the
Food Bank will hold June food box distributions on Fridays from 10
a.m. to 2 p.m.
“We are asking clients to not come for a food box if they are hav-
ing any symptoms or concerned about their health,” Ambrose said.
“We are limiting our geographic service area to Sheridan to Otis on
Highway 18 and Sheridan to Hebo on Highway 22. We are asking
clients and volunteers to wash their hands immediately upon entry
to the building. Our lobby is closed until further notice.
“Food box distribution is happening outside while maintaining a
safe distance between clients. We are sanitizing and keeping the food
quarantined for three days before distribution. Pre-made boxes are
available on distribution days, limited to two days of food for two
adults. Clients within our geographic service area are still welcome
to visit us weekly.”
People must check in 15 minutes before closing to receive a food
box. If you need immediate assistance, call 211 or visit 211info.org.
Those who are unable to pick up a food box can fill out an authorized
representative form and that designated person can pick up a food
box on your behalf. The authorization is good for one year.
The Food Bank is continuing the Farm Share Rx program with 35
farm shares being distributed from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesdays. It
is a first-come, first-served distribution until the shares are depleted.
The Food Bank continues to seek volunteers to help with repacking
food, putting food on the shelves, handing out food boxes, end-of-
month inventory and picking up food donations at area stores.
Call to ensure someone is available to assist. People also can sign
up for a monthly e-mail for the Food Bank calendar and events, as
well as follow the Food Bank on Facebook.
The Food Bank is an equal opportunity provider.
Call Ambrose at 503-879-3663 or contact her at fambrose@mari-
onpolkfoodshare.org for more information or to volunteer.
Committee & Special Event
Board meeting days and times
• Ceremonial Hunting Board meets as needed. Chair: Marline Groshong.
• Culture Committee meets at 5:30 p.m. the second Tuesday of the month at the
Grand Ronde Food Bank/iskam mfkhmfk haws, 9675 Grand Ronde Road. Chair:
• Editorial Board meets monthly. The next meeting will be held at 10 a.m. Friday,
June 25, using the Zoom teleconference application. Chair: Siobhan Taylor. Contact:
• Education Committee meets at 5:30 p.m. on the first Tuesday of the month in the
Adult Education building. Chair: Tammy Cook.
• Elders Committee meets at 10 a.m. the third Wednesday of the month in the Elders
Activity Center. Chair: Penny DeLoe.
• Enrollment Committee meets quarterly in Room 204 of the Governance Center.
Chair: Debi Anderson.
• Fish & Wildlife Committee meets at 5:30 p.m. the second Tuesday of the month at
the Natural Resources building off Hebo Road. Chair: Harold Lyon.
• Health Committee meets at 10 a.m. the second Tuesday of the month in the Molalla
Room of the Health & Wellness Center. Chair: Bernadine Shriver.
• Housing Grievance Board meets at 4 p.m. the third Thursday of the month in the
Housing Department conference room. Chair: Simone Auger.
• Powwow Special Event Board meets monthly at noon at the Community Center.
Dates vary. Contact Dana Ainam at 503-879-2037. Chair: Dana Ainam.
• TERO Commission meets at 10 a.m. the first Tuesday of the month in the Employment
2016 – The approximately 120-
year break in Grand Ronde Tribal
members fishing for salmon at Wil-
lamette Falls ended. Surrounded by
the rushing water of the Willamette
River and standing on a slippery
outcropping of rock, Tribal Lead
Maintenance Technician Andrew
Freeman stuck the long handle
of a dip net out into a whitewater
torrent and caught a salmon. On
a boat downriver, Tribal Council 2016
Chairman Reyn Leno, Vice Chair
Jack Giffen Jr. and Tribal Council members Ed Pearsall, Jon A. George
and Tonya Gleason-Shepek watched the historic moment as Shepek
captured the moment on her cell phone. “For me, it was just amazing
to see our people up there on the rocks, dip netting,” Leno said.
2011 – Tribal Council capped off more than 10 years of work at the
Cultural Resources Department with an allocation of $16,500 to buy
5,300 copies of the department’s Chinuk Wawa dictionary. The pub-
lication, which was almost 500 pages, included approximately 1,000
core words and 3,000 compound words, documenting the language as
it was spoken by past generations of Tribal members. The new edition
was one-third longer than the working dictionary the department had
created in 2001.
2006 – Spirit Mountain Community Fund distributed $1.7 million
to 36 area nonprofits during the second quarter of 2006. “The Tribe
continues to demonstrate our unwavering commitment to giving back
to the communities who’ve supported us and now need our support,”
Tribal Public Affairs Director Siobhan Taylor said. Community Fund
Director Shelley Hanson said that they planned to launch a new web-
site with information about the fund, how to apply and other details.
The website also would include an online application to streamline
the process and create more efficiency.
2001 – Tribal member Gene LaBonte started working with Tribal
Cemetery Caretaker Russ Leno to map the area, and identify lost
gravesites and deteriorating headstones. The project was facilitated
through the Cultural Resources Department. Cultural Resources
Manager June Olson said the mapping work was brought about by a
local disaster: a fire at Harold and Velma Mercier’s home, where the
old cemetery record book was located. “We are also trying to grid out
a new part of the cemetery so that it’s like a regular cemetery,” she
said. “It’s so we know how many people can be buried there.”
1996 – Tribal members attended a signing ceremony to mark the
executive order issued by Gov. John Kitzhaber on State/Tribal gov-
ernment-to-government relations. The executive order recognized
Tribal sovereignty and directed the state to work with each of the nine
Tribes. “Our Tribe takes government-to-government relationships very
seriously. … I hope this will be the starting block of an effort between
all of us,” Tribal Council Chairman Mark Mercier said.
1991 – Tribal students taking part in Grand Ronde educational
programs were paying close attention to proposed budget cuts brought
on by Measure 5, Oregon’s property tax relief initiative, which directly
affected school funding. According to Tribal Education Director Dean
Azule, state schools would be forced to put a ceiling on enrollment
numbers and increase the GPA requirements for incoming students.
The end result was that more students would need to attend commu-
nity college instead of a four-year school.
1986 – Tribal Council Chairman Mark Mercier traveled to Rich-
land, Wash., to attend the Bureau of Indian Affair’s Superintendents
Conference. Siletz Superintendent Nelsen Witt had extended an invi-
tation to several Tribal leaders. The meeting was focused on timber
management issues, water rights and the bureau’s involvement in
Tribal trade missions. “I had a chance to talk to the director about
the housing problems we are facing,” Mercier said. “The bureau has
been directed to change their approach on housing funds. The bureau
is holding our funds up at the Washington, D.C., level.”
Yesteryears is a look back at Tribal history in five-year incre-
ments through the pages of Smoke Signals.
Services building. Chair: Russell Wilkinson.
• Timber Committee meets at 5 p.m. the second Thursday of the month at the Natural
Resources building off Hebo Road. Interim Chair: Jon R. George.
• Veterans Special Event Board meets at 5:30 p.m. the first Tuesday of the month in
the old Elders Craft House. Chair: Rich VanAtta.
To update information on this list, contact Publications Coordinator Dean Rhodes
at 503-879-1463 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
(Editor’s note: All committee and special event board in-person meetings have been
suspended during the Tribe’s reaction to the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic.)
LIHEAP program open in service area
The Tribal Social Service’s LIHEAP – Low Income Home Energy As-
sistance Program – is open to eligible Tribal members in the six-county
service area and Clackamas County.
This is a first-come, first-served program and income criteria applies.
LIHEAP is federally funded through the Department of Health and Hu-
man Services and is designed to help low-income households with home
For more information, contact Social Services at 503-879-2034.