Board Member Bios

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Board of Directors

Ground Breaking 2014

Don Anderson, President & Director

Don has been an attorney in private practice with the law firm of Eisenhower & Carlson for over 30 years. He is currently Mayor of the City of Lakewood, after having served on the City Council since January 2008 and as Deputy Mayor for five years on the Council. He represents Lakewood on the board of Pierce Transit, and co-chairs the South Sound Military and Communities Partnership.

Don’s past civic and community involvement includes serving as Board President of Tacoma Goodwill Industries; President of the Puyallup School District Board; Board Member of Rotary Club #8, and serving on numerous other boards. He also has an extensive record of volunteer service and has been an official for high school, NCAA and Olympic Trials track and field meets.

Don received his bachelor’s in Business Administration and his J.D. from the University of Puget Sound. He was commissioned in the U.S. Navy Reserve upon graduating from college in 1975, and served overseas as a U.S. Navy JAG officer from 1978 to 1981.

Jim Martinson, Vice President & Director

Jim is a Vietnam Veteran who lost both legs above the knee in Da Nang in 1968. He started racing wheelchairs in 1976 and competed in numerous road races and track events. Jim founded Shadow Products, a sports equipment manufacturing company, and developed products like the Race Wheelchair for 10k, marathon and track; , the Kan Ski for water skiing; the mono ski for snow skiing; the basketball and tennis wheelchair, and many other sports products. In 1992, Sunrise Medical Quickie purchased his company and he worked with them in product development and training through 2000.

He participated in the 1980 Paralympics in Holland, winning three gold and two silver medals. He also finished first in the 1981 Boston Marathon and won three gold medals at the 1984 Paralympics in New York, where he set two world records. Jim participated in the 1984 Summer Olympics Games in the 1500 meter Wheelchair Exhibition and carried the 1984 and 1993 Olympic Torches. He finished first in the 1987 Midnight Sun race from Fairbanks to Anchorage, which covers 367 miles in nine 9 days. In 1989, he began competing in downhill ski racing and won gold medals at the National Disabled Ski Championships in both 1989 and 1992. Jim also received a gold medal at the 1992 Albertville, France, Paralympics in downhill and won gold medals for the Canadian Championship Slalom and Giant Slalom. Jim was also nominated for the Governor’s Trophy that year.

The State of Washington Senate passed a resolution presenting him with the Washington Ambassador for Good Will Award. He also received the Distinguished Citizen Award and the Washington General Award, in addition to being nominated for the Seattle Post Intelligencer Athlete of the Year. In 1982, Jim received the Vietnam Veteran of the year award and the America Silver Helmet Award in Washington, D.C. from AMVETS. In 1983, he was the Milwaukee, Wis. Veterans Wheelchair Games Most Outstanding Athlete. In1993, he received the Most Outstanding Skier Award in Beaver Creek, Colo. Jim was inducted into the National Disabled Ski Hall of Fame in 2003, the National Wheelchair Hall of Fame in 2007, and the Pierce County, Wash. Hall of Fame in 2008. The Exercise Trail at Wildwood Park in Puyallup, Wash. is named after Jim. Jim is currently retired from competitive sports, but still enjoys participating in recreational activities and takes pleasure in helping others by coaching and instructing them.

Michael E. Bickford, Treasurer and Director

Mike graduated from the University of Washington with an emphasis in Asian studies, Chinese language and International Communication. He is a past President of the Washington State China Relations Council and served on UW Advisory Boards for certificate programs in International Business and Professional Languages. He also served in the U.S. Navy Reserve.

Employed by Weyerhaeuser Company for 30 years, including 10 years in the People’s Republic of China as President/General Manager of Weyerhaeuser China Ltd., he earned the company President’s award for China leadership and market development. Mike also held the positions of Director of Corporate Marketing and Communications, Director of Corporate Public Relations and Positioning, and Director of Communications for all Pulp and Paper businesses. He also served as Regional Public Affairs Manager in several locations, including as a member of the company recovery team from the eruption of Mount St. Helens in Washington State.

Robert G. Krajczynski, Secretary & Director

After graduating from the University of Pennsylvania in 1964, Bob joined the Air Force. He continued his education earning a Master of Science in Telecommunications Engineering at the University of Southern Mississippi. His numerous awards earned during his service include the Legion of Merit, Bronze Star, Meritorious Service Medals, Joint Service Commendation Medal, Air Force Commendation Medal, Republic of Vietnam Technical Medal of Honor First Class, as well as many other unit and campaign awards.

Bob served the US Air Force for 25 years of progressively challenging positions, ending his career as the Director of Command, Control & Communications Programs, Headquarters Air Force Systems Command. After military retirement, he worked for The Boeing Company, managing their USAF F-22 Raptor Maintenance Training System Development.

Bruce McKenty, Course Manager & Director

Bruce is the Course Manager of the American Lake Veterans Golf Course, as well a board member of the “Friends of the American Lake Veterans Golf Course.”

He is a retired Army officer and a retired general contractor. He graduated from Texas A&M University where he earned his commission as a second Lieutenant in the U.S. Army Field Artillery. He went on to flight school en route to his first assignment in Vietnam as an AH-1G Cobra attack helicopter pilot. Wounded twice, he has the unique distinction of being one of a small handful of Army helicopter pilots to survive after being shot down by an SA-7 heat seeking missile. He was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross, Bronze Star, Two Purple Hearts and numerous Air Medals with two of them being awarded for valor. Bruce went on to spend 21 years in the Army and retired in 1991 as a Lieutenant Colonel.

He earned a Master of Science degree from the University of Southern California in 1984, and in 1986 graduated from the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth, Kan. Later, he became a general contractor in the greater Seattle/Tacoma area. After his retirement, Bruce became a very active and enthusiastic volunteer at the American Lake Veterans Golf Course. He is deeply involved in helping veterans through his leadership in the Military Order of the Purple Heart, where he is currently the National Junior Vice Commander.

John Caulfield, Director

John Caulfield received his BS in Business Administration from Boston University and a Masters Degree in Business Administration from Seattle University.  He is currently the City Manager of Lakewood, Washington.

His previous positions include City Manager of Mountlake Terrace, Washington; Deputy City Manager, Community and Economic Development Director, and Finance Director for the City of University Place, Washington; and a Senior Financial Analyst for the City of Federal Way, Washington.

John also served in the US Army with the 2nd Ranger Battalion at Fort Lewis, Washington.

Gene Daniel, Director

Gene is a retired, U.S. Army major general. He graduated from Texas Western College with a Bachelor of Business Administration and also has a Master’s Degree in Public Administration. General Daniel served as the Assistant VII Corps Commander in Germany and Saudi Arabia during Desert Storm; served in the Joint Chiefs of Staff as the Deputy Director of International Negotiations in Washington, D.C. and as the Chairman, JCS Representative and lead negotiator for Strategic Nuclear Negotiations (START) in Geneva, Switzerland.

He also served as Chief of Staff and 1st Brigade Commander of the 24th Infantry Division at Fort Stewart, Ga., as well as serving two tours in Vietnam as an Armored Calvary Troop Commander and as a Corps Assistant Operations Officer. General Daniel retired as the Director of Operations, Intelligence, and Policy at NATO’s Allied Forces Central Europe in Brunssum, The Netherlands. His awards include the Army Distinguished Service Medal, the Silver Star, and Bronze Star with V and Four Oak Leaf Clusters.

John B. Dimmer, Director

John is the Managing Member of FIRS Management LLC, a private investment holding company.  Prior to joining FIRS, he was President and cofounder of Free Range Media, Inc., a professional internet services firm.  From March 1986 to June 1995, he was employed with Reliance Surety Company, a leading provider of surety credit for corporations and individuals, where he held the position of Manager of Commercial Surety.

He holds a BS degree in Finance from the University of Oregon.  He currently serves on the Board of Directors of Idaho Trust Bancorp, a bank holding company based in Boise, Idaho, PBJ Holdings, an automotive dealership holding company based in Portland, Oregon, and Airstream Adventures Northwest, an Airstream travel trailer dealership group with locations in Oregon, Washington, Idaho, and California.  Additionally, he is a member of Board of Trustees for the Washington State Historical Society, a Director and Treasurer of the Dimmer Family Foundation, and an Advisor for Bunker Labs Tacoma, an incubator for veteran entrepreneurs.  He was also a co-founder of the Tacoma Angel Network, and investment group focused on providing capital to early-stage businesses.

Mary Forbes, Director

Colonel Mary Forbes graduated from the US Military Academy in 1983.  She is a graduate of the Army War College and served on active duty with the US Army and the Washington National Guard for over 26 years.

She is currently the Assistant Director for Veterans Services at the Washington State Department of Veterans Affairs where she champions federal and state initiatives to end homelessness among veteran.  Her efforts have helped communities to greatly expanding their capacity to serve homeless veterans and to significantly reduce the number of homeless veterans in the state.

Roger Gatts, Director

Roger is the assistant manager of the course at the American Lake Veterans Golf Course. Roger has been assisting our veterans as a volunteer in various positions since 2003.

After joining the Army, Roger was stationed in Camp Stanley, Korea. Returning home, he served at Fort Lewis where he worked for the Director of Logistics. After developing some medical problems, he retired from the military and worked in residential real estate sales and marketing, becoming a commercial sales broker. Additionally, he worked in Information Resource Management for Puget Sound Health Care System and as the project manager for a food service contractor at Fort Lewis.

Regarding his position at the Golf Course, Roger says that after all these years, God has blessed him with something that he really enjoys. He finds it very rewarding to be involved with so many wonderful volunteers with the same passion as he, that work very hard every day to make a difference in the lives of our veterans and their families.

John Hicks, Director

Doug Neff, Director

Doug has been a Certified Public Accountant for over 34 years in practice with the CPA firm of Johnson, Stone & Pagano, P.S., focusing his practice in the audit and tax service areas for telecommunications and not-for-profit entities. He is currently semi-retired and continues to work part-time and maintain his CPA certification and licenses in Washington and South Dakota.

Doug’s past civic and community involvement includes serving as Board Treasurer for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Tacoma Pierce County, Board Treasurer for the Fircrest Business Association, Board Member of the University Place/Fircrest Chamber of Commerce Division, Board Member of the Washington Independent Telephone Scholarship Association, and Member of Rotary Club #8 Finance, Scholarship and Project Committees.

Doug received his B.A. in Business Administration from the University of Puget Sound. 

Jim Sims, Director

In addition to serving as President of the Friends, Jim is the immediate Past National Commander of the Military Order of the Purple Heart, a Life Member of the Marine Corps League and Vietnam Veterans Association, and a member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars. He is the Chair of the Washington Veterans Legislative Coalition and a member of the Mason County Planning Commission.

Upon Graduating from Saint Martin’s University and earning a Master’s Degree from George Washington University, Jim entered the Marine Corps, serving a distinguished career of more than 26 years. He commanded a Platoon, a Rifle Company in Vietnam, the Marine Barracks in Hawthorne, Nev. , and the 3rd Battalion 4th Marines, to name a few of his significant assignments. He is a Distinguished Graduate of the Air War College. When he retired, Jim was the Chief of Political-Military Analysis for the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

His awards and decorations include the Defense Distinguished Service Medal, Defense Superior Service Medal, Bronze Star with V for valor, Purple Heart, Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry with Palm and Silver Star, Meritorious Service Medal, Joint Service Commendation Medal, Navy Commendation Medal with V for valor, three Navy Achievement Medals, and numerous other US and foreign awards. After retiring from the Marine Corps, Jim was the Director of the Washington State Pollution Liability Insurance Agency for 12 years, a member of the Board of Trustees of Saint Martin’s University, and in 2000 was named as the Distinguished Graduate of Saint Martin’s.

Anne Sprute, Director

Anne is a 1989 graduate of the United States Army Warrant Officer Course and U.S. Army Aviation School.  She is qualified in three Army Airframes, the UH-1 Huey, OH-58 Kiowa Warrior and the UH-60 Blackhawk.

In 2015, Anne graduated from the inaugural Presidential Leadership Scholars class, a unique leadership development program that was sponsored by the U.S. Presidential Centers of Lyndon B. Johnson, George H.W. Bush, William J. Clinton, and George W. Bush. These centers have partnered to bring together a select group of diverse leaders who have the desire and capacity to take their leadership strengths to a higher cause in order to help their communities and our country prosper.

After 24 years of military service, Anne accepted a corporate position in Seattle. She realized her sense of service was her passion and founded Rally Point 6, Inc., a non-profit organization serving veterans, and service members and their families.  As its Founder and CEO, Anne’s vision to ensure service members and their families are supported throughout the lifecycle of their transition has grown into a National mission as a strategic partner with the USO.  In 2015 the USO invested in and opened five USO-RP/6 locations with a goal of expanding fully within the USO infrastructure in future years.

Anne is also the Co-Chair of the MyVA Community Puget Sound Board and serves as an advisor to several other military service organizations.

Pat Steel, Director

Retired Army Col. Patrick Steel currently serves as the volunteer Director of the Pierce County/South Puget Sound Heroes to Hometowns (H2H) organization, a Department of Defense sponsored program that is managed by the American Legion nationwide. Col. Steel is also the Co-Chair for The Multicare Regional Cancer Center Patient and Family Partnership Council. In this role, he assists the staff and patients in developing major programs that support ongoing education and treatment for new patients and their families. Col. Steel retired from the United States Army on Dec. 31, 1980, after completing 28 years of active duty. His final assignment at Fort Lewis was as the Deputy Post Commander, where he was responsible for formulating, directing, and coordinating plans, policies, and programs for the major activities at Fort Lewis. He also served as President of the Tacoma Rotary #8 Club in 1987.

Ken Still, Director

Ken has been a Professional Golf Association member since 1953. He joined the PGA tour in 1960 and had three victories. He was a member of the 1969 Ryder Cup Team and Ken appeared in the top 60 money winners from 1966 to 1973. He won the CBS Golf Classic in 1970 with partner Gene Littler. Later joining the Senior PGA, Ken’s best year was 1990, when he finished 42nd on the money list and registered five top 10, and 11 top 25 finishes. He is the 1969 Washington State Athlete of the Year, a Member of the Washington State Sports Hall of Fame, Pacific Northwest Golf Association Hall of Fame, and the Pierce County Hall of Fame. He played the Masters Tournament seven times.

Ed Trobaugh, Director

Retired Army Maj. Gen. Ed Trobaugh graduated from West Point with a Bachelor’s degree and also holds a Masters Degree in Public Administration. He served one tour in Korea as Company Commander, and two tours in Vietnam as Battalion and Brigade Operations Officer and Battalion Commander. Ed was Assistant Division Commander at Fort Lewis; Assistant Commandant at Fort Benning; Chief, Joint U.S. Military Assistance Advisory Group, Spain; and Commanding General, 82nd Airborne Division, Fort Bragg.

General Trobaugh retired as Deputy Commanding General, Fifth U.S. Army, at Fort Sam Houston, Texas. He has many awards and decorations including the Army Distinguished Service Medal, the Silver and Bronze Stars, and Purple Heart.

David R. Walters, Director

Born in Albert Lea, Minn., Dave graduated from the University of Iowa. He went on to earn two Master’s Degrees, one from Pacific Lutheran University and another from the U.S. Navy Postgraduate School.

Dave’s Air Force career included positions such as Weapons Controller, Electronic Counter Measures Officer, Legislative Liaison Officer and White House Liaison Officer. After studying Mandarin Chinese, he became an Air Attaché in the U.S. Embassy Beijing, China. Dave’s military decorations include the Joint Services Meritorious Service Medal and the Air Force Meritorious Service medal with one Oak Leaf cluster.

Upon his retirement after 20 years of military service, Dave worked initially for Westinghouse Defense Electronics as Managing Director, Business Development, establishing their China Office located in Beijing. Later, as Vice President, Business Development, he established their Southeast Asia Office located in Bangkok, Thailand. Moving back to the U.S., he was appointed Director, Government Affairs, for Northrop Grumman Corporation. Later, he returned to Bangkok for another posting and his final appointment was Vice President, Middle East and India, located in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.

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