This week we took some time to chat with Deb Murphy about her years of involvement with WAEF and why she devotes much of her personal time to volunteering.
Deb was raised in Grant County. She attended Central Washington University where she married a farmer, "...which I said I never would do!" Deb and Robert are cherry growers and have been married for 40 years, "...egads! How time flies!" she remarked. They have three successful children, two grandchildren and two more on the way.
In her personal life she mentors students, is an interview coach, an advocate for violence/sexual assault, chairs Grant Hospital District #7, and if that didn't seem like enough, she also manages an office in Ellensburg, "It's just fun to be involved."
When asked what inspired her to become involved with WAEF amidst such a loaded schedule, Deb described herself and her method of multitasking, "I've always been a doer and I think we all need to give back in some way to society. I just allot my time and make it work... working with people is a passion of mine, especially kids who have so much to offer if guided the right way."
Deb's involvement with WAEF has primarily been on the scholarship selection committee where she has served for more than 12 years. She describes the process of student selection as, "fun to be able to help them achieve their dreams without having to worry about finances so much." She truly believes in the students and the value of this work, "...the kids' bios are impressive and they will possibly be the new leaders in our society." Deb reflects on the mission of WAEF, to impact lives though access to educational opportunities, by adding that "Education is vital to improving lives... My own son, benefited from a CCM scholarship full ride and I saw how much less stress he had-not having to worry about how he/we were going to budget in a college education. We went through a roller coaster ride with the apple industry a few years ago, so that scholarship was invaluable!! He's become one of those leaders I talked about earlier."
Volunteering with WAEF is a rewarding experience, to Deb feelings of pride come from "Just hearing the kids when they come back and I get a chance to talk with them, or they give a presentation... seeing successes that so many don't really get a chance to hear- how that scholarship really helped the student... it makes me smile!"
Aside from work and volunteering, Deb's personal time is spent in many different areas, "....I love to read and it is probably a bad habit-ha!! I will read most anything I can get my hands on. What would life be without reading? I can't imagine it!! I love to travel, decorate, snowmobile, walk, hang with friends, playing cards, watching movies (love tech, space age, history, and foreign) music/dance, and being an advocate/mentor..."
Thank you Deb for sharing parts of your story with us and for all that you do with WAEF, your time and efforts are truly valued.