City seeks Hall of Fame nominees

April 20, 2010

Nominate outstanding citizens for the Issaquah Hall of Fame, the annual honor bestowed by city leaders on someone who has made a lasting contribution to the community.

Every spring, the mayor and City Council president select the honoree. Mayor Ava Frisinger and Council President John Traeger will evaluate nominees on several criteria, such as civic-mindedness, leadership and service.

Frisinger and Traeger will also evaluate the role a person plays in drawing positive attention to Issaquah and fundraising for the public good. Length of service will be a factor in the decision as well.

Send the name of the nominee and a brief summary of his or her contributions to the community to: The Office of the Mayor, P.O. Box 1307, Issaquah, WA 98027-1307. Or submit the nomination via e-mail to mayor@ci.issaquah.wa.us.

The nominations must be received by May 3. Call 837-3020 or e-mail mayor@ci.issaquah.wa.us to learn more. Evaluators will maintain confidentiality throughout the selection process.

The recipient or recipients will be announced at the 31st Annual Community Awards Luncheon on May 18.

Past honorees include Harriet Fish — the historian who led the drive to name a ferry after Issaquah — environmentalist Ruth Kees and, last year, Issaquah Highlands mastermind Judd Kirk and Issaquah Valley Trolley backer Barb Justice.

In a separate honor, the Issaquah Chamber of Commerce named Frisinger as Citizen of the Year at the 2009 luncheon.

Growing legacy: Issaquah reigns as Tree City USA

April 20, 2010

The mayor and city brass gathered to celebrate Arbor Day last April beneath dull gray skies — a bare, drab scene unlike the leafy canopy shading Issaquah streets in summertime.

City leaders and residents gather every spring to plant the official Arbor Day tree: a Burr oak near Gibson Hall last year, a crabapple at Grand Ridge Elementary School the year before. The annual ceremony serves as more than a photo opportunity.

Officials will mark Arbor Day indoors next week, with a presentation by city Open Space Steward Matt Mechler to the municipal Park Board.

Issaquah, designated as a Tree City USA for the past 16 years, is required to observe and proclaim Arbor Day to maintain the designation. Officials mark the day with a tree planting, and select a ceremonial tree for each occasion.

City Arborist Alan Haywood oversees the urban forest and ensures that Issaquah keeps the Tree City USA distinction — no small feat in a city where tree canopy covers 51 percent of the municipality.

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City seeks Issaquah Hall of Fame nominees

April 16, 2010

NEW — 6 a.m. April 16, 2010

Nominate outstanding citizens for the Issaquah Hall of Fame, the annual honor bestowed by city leaders on someone who has made a lasting contribution to the community.

Every spring, the mayor and City Council president select the honoree. Mayor Ava Frisinger and Council President John Traeger will evaluate nominees on several criteria, such as civic-mindedness, leadership and service.

Frisinger and Traeger will also evaluate the role a person plays in drawing positive attention to Issaquah and fundraising for the public good. Length of service will be a factor in the decision as well.

Read more

Former Councilman David Kappler lauded for environmental record

January 5, 2010

Issaquah claimed about 8,000 residents when David Kappler launched a successful City Council campaign in 1991.

David Kappler

David Kappler

Then, before the seismic shifts brought on by widespread growth, residents talked about still-unrealized plans to build urban villages on Cougar Mountain and Grand Ridge. Costco still maintained corporate headquarters in Kirkland.

Kappler, a tireless advocate for trails and open space preservation, won every election since his ’91 victory. The former councilman, who shaped decisions for almost 20 years, led the push to conserve land and cast crucial votes to shape transportation and public safety in Issaquah and across the Eastside.

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Honor Ruth Kees during creek cleanup Sunday

May 27, 2009

NEW — 6 a.m. May 27, 2009

Save Lake Sammamish will honor late Issaquah environmentalist Ruth Kees with a workday along the creek that bears her name. Volunteers will gather May 31 to clear invasive plant species from the banks of Kees Creek in south Issaquah.

Join Save Lake Sammamish volunteers at Southeast 98th Place on 238th Way Southeast between 1 and 4 p.m. Sunday. Tools, gloves and refreshments will be available. Organizers said they would appreciate for volunteers to RSVP, but it’s not required. RSVP by e-mailing bshelton27@comcast.net.

Kees died May 6 after suffering a broken hip several days earlier. She was 84.

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Issaquah environmentalist Ruth Kees dies

May 12, 2009

Ruth Kees sits with her formidable Rolodex at the dining room and worktable of her Tiger Mountain home, where much of the work done in her 50 years of local environmental activism took shape. By Greg Farrar

Ruth Kees sits with her formidable Rolodex at the dining room and worktable of her Tiger Mountain home, where much of the work done in her 50 years of local environmental activism took shape. By Greg Farrar

Longtime environmental activist Ruth Kees died May 6. She was 84.

Kees was a longtime local advocate for preservation of open space and environmental protection. The city created the Ruth Kees Award for a Sustainable Community in her honor. The award recognizes others if they have “demonstrated outstanding commitment to protecting and preserving Issaquah’s natural resources for a sustainable community.”

Issaquah Alps Trails Club co-founder Harvey Manning was honored posthumously with the award May 4. Kees did not attend the ceremony.

Issaquah City Councilman David Kappler said Kees was an amazing person.

“All her work was with so much life and energy to make Issaquah a better place,” said Kappler, who had known Kees since the mid-1970s through his work with the trails club. Read more

Environmental activist Ruth Kees dies

May 7, 2009

NEW — 3:05 p.m. May 7, 2009

Longtime environmental activist Ruth Kees died this morning. She was 84.

Kees was a longtime local advocate for preservation of open space and environmental protection. The city created the Ruth Kees Award for a Sustainable Community in her honor. The award recognizes others if they have “demonstrated outstanding commitment to protecting and preserving Issaquah’s natural resources for a sustainable community.”

Issaquah Alps Trails Club co-founder Harvey Manning was honored posthumously with the award Monday night. Kees did not attend the ceremony.

City Councilman David Kappler said Kees was an amazing person.

“All her work was with so much life and energy to make Issaquah a better place,” said Kappler, who had known Kees since the mid-1970s through his work with the trails club.

By Greg Farrar

Ruth Kees in 2004 with her formidable Rolodex at her Tiger Mountain home. By Greg Farrar

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City seeks nominations for environmental award

January 19, 2009

Ruth KeesRuth Kees

City officials are preparing to honor a local environmentalist and activist by accepting nominations for the 2009 Ruth Kees Environmental Award for a Sustainable Community.

Since its creation in 2003, the award has been handed out to individuals who have worked within the community to preserve Issaquah’s natural resources. Read more

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