The Yavapai County Board of Supervisors is formally recognizing members of the Yarnell Hill Recovery Group for their service. Yavapai County Emergency Management Coordinator Denny Foulk praised both individual members of the YHRG and the organization as a whole for their efforts, and presented handsome wooden plaques acknowledging their service.
Receiving plaques were YHRG Steering Committee Chair Chuck Tidey, Vice Chair Kathleen Stowe, Director of Finance Paul Jones, Director of Reconstruction Bob Brandon and Director of Communications Frances Lechner. In addition, plaques were presented to Yarnell Community Center Executive Director Scott Shephard, a former Steering Committee member, and Volunteeer Committee Chair Linda Ma, who lost her home in the fire. The Yarnell Community Presbyterian Church was also recognized for its role as a center of many recovery efforts and activities in the four months since the fire.
Yavapai County Supervisors helped present the awards and shook hands with all of the recipients. In a letter accompanying the plaques, Board of Supervisors Chairman Chip Davis wrote: “As the tragedies unfolded and hundreds of people were displaced by the ravages of wildfire, you stood in the gap for the people of Yarnell.
“Serving as a member of the Yarnell hill Recovery Group you gave of yourself freely, volunteering hundred of hours so that your community could be whole once more. Your compassion is only superseded by your „can do‟ attitude.
“Hundreds of hours have been dedicated to serving our people, and due to your unwavering perseverance. Your actions enhanced the overall effectiveness of the recovery operations in Yarnell.
“The Yavapai County Board of Supervisors recognizes and appreciates your steadfast dedication to the people of Yavapai County during the Yarnell Hill Wildfire recovery. On behalf of the Yavapai County Board of Supervisors, and the People of Yavapai County,please accept our sincere gratitude. Your contribution is forever etched upon our hearts and minds.”
Presentations were also made to Hugh Vallely and Marcie Slay of the Yavapai County Emergency Management Office and a number of divisions of the Yavapai County Sheriff‟s Office.
Enthusiastic applause from the packed meeting room echoed the warm sentiments expressed by the Board.
About Yarnell Hill Recovery Group
Exiled from their homes and divided by the closure of Highway 89, a group of 20 Yarnell and Peeples Valley residents conferred in person and by phone about how to rebuild their fire-ravaged community.
Out of that conversation, the all-volunteer Yarnell Hill Recovery Group was formed with a steering committee made up of five key leaders representing organizations that have long provided services to residents: the Yarnell-Peeples Valley Chamber of Commerce, the Yarnell Community Center, the Yarnell Community Presbyterian Church, the Fire Department and Weaver Mountains – People Who Care.
Under the direction of the steering committee, a dozen volunteer sub-committees have been formed to provide resources for everything from emergency housing and financial assistance to clean up and rebuilding. The group‟s website, www.YarnellHillRecoveryGroup.org, provides a single place for residents to get news about recovery efforts and connect with services.
The group was recently recognized by Arizona and Yavapai County as the official recovery group for the Yarnell Hill Fire.
The Yarnell Community Presbyterian Church, acting as the Yarnell Hill Recovery Group‟s fiscal agent, has set up an account for the Yarnell Hill Recovery Group though the National Bank of Arizona, account #76 0000 2730, Routing #122105320. There is a Pay Pal button for donations at www.YarnellHillRecoveryGroup.org. Checks payable to Yarnell Hill Recovery