Squalicum student and WFCN board member Rolando Gonzalez with Squalicum teacher Jason Bergman

In December 2018, a number of staff and parents from Bellingham Public Schools were awarded for their outstanding contributions to increasing community caring, empowerment, and connections that improve the lives of children, youth, and families. Each year Whatcom Family and Community Network (WFCN) holds the Ken Gass Community Building Awards and Dinner which recognizes individuals, business and organizations that make contributions to improving the lives of children and families in our community. Currently, two people from Bellingham Public Schools, a teacher and a high school student, serve on the Board of Directors at WFCN. The event is named after Ken Gass, a retired pediatrician and former member of the Bellingham Public Schools’ School Board.

In the past two years, award recipients associated with Bellingham Public Schools include:


Jason Bergman – Squalicum High School

Friends of the Family Resource Center

Marta Herrera-Carreon – Shuksan Middle School

Michael Kopf – Shuksan Middle School

Erin Meese – Shuksan Middle School

Students For Action – Multiple students from high schools across Bellingham


2017 Birchwood PTA Executive Board – Birchwood Elementary School

Michelle Hanks – Geneva Elementary School

Jared Ibarra Del Bosque – Family Engagement

Social Action Club – Shuksan Middle School & Fairhaven Middle School

Alexa Tucker– Shuksan Middle School

Joe Wooding – Options High School


Whatcom Family & Community Network envisions a thriving community built on equity, social connection, participation and opportunities. Their purpose is to promote the well-being of children, youth and families by convening and supporting communities to build their capacity.

WFCN has served Whatcom County for 29 years and  is home to the Whatcom Prevention Coalition, youth substance prevention and healthy youth development; the Mt. Baker Community Coalition, youth substance prevention and healthy youth development; MAD HOPE, a youth suicide prevention program; the Roosevelt Neighborhood Resource Center; and professional and community education on why resilience, toxic stress and hope matter.


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