Meet the Bethlehem Inn Board of Directors.


Board of Directors

Pete Sandgren, Treasurer

Pete Sandgren, President

Pete earned a B.A. in Biology from Augustana College in Rock Island, IL. He owned a data management and statistics company providing services and support to the biotech industry, before selling the business in 2007. Pete lived in the Bay Area for nearly 15 years before moving to Bend in 2008, where he now lives with his wife and young daughter.
"The Bethlehem Inn provides support to hundreds of at-need members of the community each year. The services the Bethlehem Inn provides, and the staff and volunteers who provide them, are a very impressive group. I feel it is critical to volunteer our time to help support the community."
Hugh Palcic

Hugh Palcic, Vice-President

Hugh received a B.A. in Political Science from Marist College in Poughkeepsie, New York. He currently serves as the General Manager of the Sunriver Owners Association. He is also a member of the Deschutes County Planning Commission. Hugh lives in Sunriver with his wife Lisa, two daughters and three dogs.
"My first experience with the Bethlehem Inn was during a site visit in 2009. Considering the dramatic economic downturn occurring at that time, I was compelled to go and learn more about this organization and the critical role it provides for all of Central Oregon. Seeing the Inn’s mission of shelter, help and hope in action that day confirmed the importance of their work and cemented my willingness to assist."
Julia Kennedy Cochran, Secretary

Julia Kennedy Cochran, Secretary

Julie received her B.A. from the University of Wisconsin and then worked for ten years as a journalist in New York. Later she received her M.B.A. from Columbia University and worked for fourteen years as a marketing manager and new product developer for telecommunications and Internet-related companies. Julie has lived in Tumalo with her husband Ron Cochran since 2003.
"In 2008, as the economy worsened, I decided to shift my contributions to local rather than national charities because I felt donations made here would have more of an impact. One of the local charities I donated to was Bethlehem Inn. I was tremendously impressed by the work Bethlehem Inn does and concerned about the growing number of homeless people in our community. In 2009, I was invited to join the Board of Directors and am honored to be part of this great effort."
Gullickson

Jeff Gullickson, Treasurer

Jeff Gullickson is a Certified Public Accountant who joined SGA in 2013. Accounting is Jeff's second career, after having owned and operated a successful photography business in Chehalis, Washington for many years. Jeff originally graduated from the University of Washington in 2008, with a degree in Business Administration. As a former business owner, Jeff has had the unique experience of helping others through challenging times. He and his wife Holly and two children Abby (9) and Hayden (7) enjoy all that Bend has to offer.
Pat Ackley, President

Pat Ackley

Pat holds advanced degrees in education and psychology and has extensive professional experience in education and organizational consulting. She has served on several other boards in the region including Partnership to End Poverty. Pat moved to Central Oregon over twenty years ago and currently lives in Bend.
"For me, the problem of homelessness is personal. I grew up in poverty and have first-hand experience of worrying about where I was going to sleep, if I would have to change schools again, or whether I would have enough to eat. We relied on the generosity of family, friends and strangers to survive. In those days, there was no such refuge as the Bethlehem Inn."
Michael Ann Benchoff

Michael Ann Benchoff

Michael Ann is employed at Deschutes County Mental Health Services as program manager. She is a long-time advocate for those experiencing homelessness and wanted to participate in the community in a meaningful manner, so found her way to the Bethlehem Inn.
"“I was impressed by the Inn’s commitment to supporting self-sufficiency and quality of life. I am honored to hold a seat on the Board of Directors, while I walk alongside the staff, volunteers and residents to address the issues of homelessness in Central Oregon.”"
David Brown

David Brown

David graduated cum laude from Duke University with a B.A. in History and Classical Studies in 1995, and then graduated from the University of Oregon Law School in 2002. He currently practices law with Merrill-O’Sullivan, located in Bend’s Old Mill District. He has served as Outreach Coordinator for the Oregon Law Students Public Interest Fund and worked with Oregon State Bar Programs. Dave moved to Oregon in 1999, where he now lives with his wife Monica and daughter Zoe.
"I believe that service is an important part of life, and try to live by Marcel Proust’s maxim: ‘The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking out new lands, but in having new vision.’"
Bruce Cummings

Bruce Cummings

Bruce spent more than 30 years as a broadcast journalist for NBC Nightly News in Washington, D.C. and Los Angeles. In Washington D.C., he served on the Community Advisory Council of St. Luke’s Shelter (for homeless men). Currently, Bruce serves on the Advisory Board of OSU/Cascades and is involved with Volunteers in Action and Shepherd’s House. He has lived in Bend since 2006 with his wife Sandy.
"Sandy and I learned of and started supporting Bethlehem Inn soon after moving here. Getting to know Gwenn Wysling only intensified my interest in the Inn and its crucial and richly varied services."
Cassie Giddings

Cassie Giddings

Cassie earned a B.A. in Community Service and Public Administration from the University of Oregon. She and her husband are part owners of BendTel, Central Oregon’s only privately owned telephone and Internet service provider. Cassie has served on the River West Neighborhood Association board, the Bend 2030 Vision board and the Oregon Nordic Club Statewide board. She has lived in Bend since 1980, with the exception of 17 years in Seattle, Washington.
"Building a strong community means investing in social capital. Individuals, who are connected to their neighbors, play an active role in shaping the destiny of their community, by influencing results that make our communities safer, healthier and more vital. I am inspired by the volunteers and staff at Bethlehem Inn."
Helen Pruitt

Helen Pruitt

Helen graduated from Oregon State University and has three grown children, each of whom graduated from Southern Oregon State University. She worked for 20 years at Central Oregon Community College in Financial Aid and as Admissions and Records administrator and Registrar, before retiring in 2003. She has volunteered with Girl Scouts and the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute. In 1970, Helen and her husband Maurice moved their family to Bend.
"I was introduced to the area’s homeless problem when serving one night at the new Bethlehem Inn project. That night the ‘homeless’ became unique individuals to me, each with different stories, hopes and diverse needs."
Tom Kemper – photo

Tom Kemper

As the Executive Director of Housing Works, Tom Kemper is keenly interested in the issue of homeless and wants to help mitigate the issue in Central Oregon. He has 25 years of experience in development, finance and real estate that he brings to the board. Tom also serves on the board or the Oregon Opportunity Network. He has a B.S Business from PSU, J.D. from Lewis and Clark Northwestern School of Law and L.L.M in Taxation, New York University.

Are you interested in joining a non-profit board that really works?

The Bethlehem Inn is seeking additional board members with varied backgrounds and experience to help the Inn continue to develop and meet the growing demand for emergency shelter in the area. Click here for more information.

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