Letters to the Editor

Posted: Thursday, March 29, 2001

Letters to the Editor

Changes raise questions, but

blood donations still needed

I was saddened to read of Suzie Kendrick's departure from the Blood Bank of Alaska. Her energy, management and enthusiasm have been instrumental in establishing the Kenai Peninsula Center and in facilitating local residents to donate at rates greater than the rest of the state.

Since I have donated one and a half gallons in Soldotna and have volunteered my time to help plumb their facility, I could claim to also have given my "blood, sweat, and tears" -- except that the needle sticks hurt so little, I have never come close to crying.

I don't know the particulars of the problems within BBA, but it surprises and worries me that employees are not welcome to talk to members of the board. As a board member of two local non-profits, I feel it is my duty, on behalf of the community and all donors, to listen to any concerns from staff, members or the community. While the inability of employees to find redress from the CEO may indicate a problem, a prohibition from talking to the board surely does.

That said, I'll be in next week to have Rita or Pam or Lynn draw another unit of my blood for the following reasons: It's been eight weeks since my last donation. Blood is critically needed for trauma victims, surgery patients and several chronic illnesses. And there's no reason both Alaska and the Kenai can't be self-sufficient in meeting their blood needs.

David Thomas


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