Marion YMCA celebrates 125 years in the community

Leslie Schneider and Cheri Harrod

Leslie Schneider and Cheri Harrod

On Tuesday, April 25, 2017 the Marion Family YMCA reached its 125th anniversary of strengthening the Marion area community. The milestone was marked during the Y’s 2016 Annual Meeting held April 24, 2017.  A community celebration is planned for September.

The Marion Family YMCA’s original articles of incorporation are dated April 25, 1892 and were witnessed by William Grills, Jesse Hunter, De Forest Edwards, Jacob Leffler, John Markert, William Denman, Lewis Gunn, Edward Huber, John Lust, John Headley, Charles Buckles, Isaac Schupp, and Samuel Keller. Although dated in 1892, the articles were not signed by the Secretary of State until December 21, 1894.

Although the specific programs and services have changed over the past 125 years, the Y’s work in Marion has always been to strengthen the community. With a mission to put Christian principles into practice through programs that build healthy spirit, mind and body for all; the Y provides program services to all who seek it out, without bias and regardless of ability, gender, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity, income or other demographic attribute.

In recent years, the Y has annually served approximately 4,000 low-income individuals by providing financial assistance with membership and program fees. Programs that develop the potential of youth include preschool education, day camp, Martial Arts, swimming and numerous youth sports. Program that improve health and well-being include group exercise classes, OhioHealth Delay the Disease® for individuals with Parkinson’s Disease, personal and small group training, water exercise classes and Wellness Coaches on duty for personal assistance.

Also at the April 24, 2017 Annual Meeting, the Y recognized outgoing board members John McDaniel and Jon Williamson; and elected the Reverend Rob Howard, Scott Knowles, and Jacqueline Ringer to the board of directors. Officers for the coming year are John Scharer, President; Dr. Len Janchar, Vice-President; CJ Assent, Secretary; and Matt Frericks, Treasurer.

The highlight of the Annual Meeting was recognizing staff members for their service. Leslie Schneider received the Y’s Mission Impact Award for Social Responsibility.

“Leslie exemplifies the Y’s focus of giving back and supporting others,” stated Executive Director Theresa Lubke. “At the Y Leslie works to connect members to one another, she also works with our Marion Mentors partnership, and is a community Leader in Me Trainer. In addition to her work at the Y, Leslie serves the community as a member of Marion City School Board, through PTA, and numerous other volunteer roles.”

Cheri Harrod received the Y’s Mission Impact Award for Healthy Living.

Lubke described Cheri as: “Cheri cares about every individual at the Y with whom she comes into contact. She works with older adults, individuals with Parkinson’s disease, and participants with mental illness. She treats everyone with dignity and love, always pushing them to work just a little harder for greater results.”

Several staff members were recognized for years of service. Carrie Guyton, Director of Relationships, was recognized for 15 years of service to the Marion Family YMCA. Morgan Rhoads, Finance Coordinator; Rick Fogle, Relationship Manager, and Laurie Waddle, Exercise Instructor were all recognized for 10 years of service.

The Marion Family YMCA is a nonprofit organization focused on strengthening the Marion community. The Y serves approximately 15,000 Marion residents each year, regardless of age, income or background. Financial assistance is available for membership and program fees for those who demonstrate financial need.

For more information on Y membership and financial assistance, call the Y at 740-725-9622, visit their website or stop in to the Wopat YMCA Center 645 Barks Road East.

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