INTERFAITH OF THE WOODLANDS ANNOUNCES 2022 HOMETOWN HEROES

The Woodlands, TX (Thursday, November 19, 2021) —Interfaith of The Woodlands is honored to announce the selection of the 2022 Hometown Heroes. The tradition of Hometown Heroes began in 1999, in celebration of The Woodlands 25th Anniversary. This year, four individuals and two organizations have been named to the distinguished list of Heroes, each recognized in a unique way for the lasting impact they have made on The Woodlands community. Paula Klapesky, Walt Lisiewski, Tim Welbes, Canopy Cancer Survivorship Center, Texas Children’s Hospital The Woodlands and an anonymous recipient will officially join 140 other distinguished individuals, businesses and organizations as Hometown Heroes during The Woodlands Celebration of Excellence Gala on Friday, April 1, 2022. Recognized for their many contributions to the community, these honorees have each demonstrated exemplary leadership and a dedication to preserving Mr. George P. Mitchell’s vision for The Woodlands community. The Woodlands Celebration of Excellence Gala will also pay a special tribute to the late Reverend Don Gebert. A member of the first class of Hometown Heroes, Gebert was also the Founding Executive Director of Interfaith of The Woodlands and worked closely with Mr. Mitchell to establish The Woodlands. In addition to these honors, the Gala will feature dinner, a live auction and an after party headlined by The Bucktown All-Stars. “We are truly excited to bring our community back together at The Woodlands Celebration of Excellence Gala, after a two-year absence. This event is rooted in celebrating our hometown, as well as our neighbors who go above and beyond in service to others. The last two years have shown us the true importance of personal connections, not only for our well-being, but also for the growth and prosperity of our region. We look forward to celebrating all of our Hometown Heroes, while remembering those that have come before us, whose contributions have created this very special place we call home,” shared Missy Herndon, President & CEO of Interfaith of The Woodlands. Criteria for the selection of the Hometown Heroes includes: serving as a positive role model, having a history of volunteerism, sacrificing personal gain to achieve noble goals, exhibiting leadership and courage and embodying the values of The Woodlands community. Nominations are open to the community and presented to a selection committee comprised of previously awarded Hometown Heroes.  The Woodlands Celebration of Excellence Gala is the largest annual fundraiser for Interfaith of The Woodlands. Generously sponsored by dozens of local businesses and organizations, all proceeds benefit Interfaith’s community programs and services. For sponsorship opportunities or individual tickets, please visit hometownheroesgala.org or contact Carolyn Donovan, Interfaith’s Director of Development, at development@woodlandsinterfaith.org or at 832-615-8225.

Paula Klapesky

Since the third grade, Paula Klapesky knew she wanted to be a teacher. She found a way to lead any activity she was a part of, and by the time she was in college had set her sights on becoming a school principal. After achieving her degree, Klapesky began her career as a 3rd grade teacher in Humble ISD.  Encouraged by her then Principal, she began working on a Master’s degree in educational administration. During that time, she met her future husband, who was a teacher and coach in Conroe ISD. Together, they completed graduate school and began a marriage that has endured for more than 33 years. Klapesky moved to Conroe ISD and taught at both the elementary and intermediate school levels before accepting the role of Assistant Principal at Collins Intermediate.  Next, she joined the team who would open Mitchell Intermediate School, serving as the Assistant Principal for two years, and then becoming the Principal, where she has led thousands of children through their 5th and 6th grade experience for the last 24 years. Beyond her caring and nurturing nature, parents remark that Klapesky not only ensures that all students achieve academically, they also learn to believe in themselves and find the drive to reach their goals. Under her leadership, students are reminded that they must always be true to themselves, and always remember their neighbor while they set-out on the path of life. In today’s challenging environment, pre-teens are faced with challenges to their emotional health and social well-being. Paula Klapesky meticulously boosts these traits, while emphasizing a delicate balance between their extracurricular activities and academics. Outside of school, Klapesky and her husband, Larry, raised three children in The Woodlands, where each attended schools within the Conroe ISD system. With her husband serving as an Assistant Principal at The Woodlands High School, both were actively involved in their children’s lives. Now her oldest and his wife live in the community. Her daughter-in-law is a teacher in the Conroe ISD, her daughter is graduating from college in December and hopes to pursue a career in education, too. Her youngest is a photographer, videographer, and entrepreneur in the making. Klapesky’s next goal in life is to earn a Doctorate in Educational Leadership while continuing her role as Principal of her second home, Mitchell Intermediate School. Educational formats have changed quite a bit in the last 30 years, but Klapesky is bringing the same commitment to her coursework that she has brought to her students and family for the past three decades. She graduates in December 2023. Klapesky’s love for her profession is boundless, and she is proud to have spent a lifetime positively influencing her students. In a hometown that has given her and her family so very much, Klapesky intends to continue nurturing and shaping young minds to become the leaders of tomorrow.  

Pictured: Paula Klapesky, 2022 Hometown Hero, with husband, Larry, family members, and Missy Herndon, President & CEO, Interfaith of The Woodlands

Walt Lisiewski

After four years in the United States Navy, Lisiewski enrolled and graduated from the University of South Florida School of Engineering earning a B.S. in Electrical Engineering. Upon graduating, he began his career in Engineering Construction. Lisiewski was employed for 23 years with Brown & Root, Inc. working in the fields of design, construction, and maintenance of nuclear power and petro-chemical plants, pulp and paper mills, refineries, pipe lines, and other specialties. He was recruited by Jacobs Engineering for the position of Sr. Vice-President, North America, Construction and Maintenance. Lisiewski continued his career at Jacobs Engineering in this capacity for 12 years. His many duties included management and responsibility for a workforce of over 5,000 professionals. After 35 years and over 2,000,000 flight miles, it was time to retire. Lisiewski decided to dedicate his time in service to his community. Just a few of Lisiewski’s community service activities include: volunteering with Neighborhood Watch for the last 13 years, Director and Vice-President of Montgomery County, Municipal Utility District #1 (two terms), Chairman of Panther Creek Residential Design Standards committee, Panther Creek flea market, Chairman of The Woodlands Township - Development Standards Committee, The Woodlands Township 4th of July Parade, Panther Creek Village Association, One Water Task Force, Saints Simon & Jude Catholic Church Men’s Club, Habitat for Humanity, Voter Awareness Council, Founding Member of Township Future and Insperity Golf Tournament volunteer, earning his 10 year pin for service. Lisiewski and his wife, Louise, have been married 47 years. They have two adult children, two grandsons, and two grand-dogs. They have lived in The Woodlands for the past 32 years.

Pictured: Walt Lisiewski, 2022 Hometown Hero, with wife Louise and family

Tim Welbes

Tim Welbes and his wife, Peg, have made The Woodlands home since 1985, raising four children and welcoming eight grandchildren. A Houston native, Tim graduated from The University of Houston with a degree in Accounting and shortly thereafter, obtained his CPA certification. He began his career with Ernst & Ernst, working in their Houston office for five years, before accepting a role with a small CPA firm in Colorado. Houston quickly called him back home where he took a role with John Pace Homes as a new home sales consultant, ultimately becoming the Chief Executive Officer for the company. This led him to Standard Pacific Homes, where he began as a Sales and Marketing manager, eventually earning a promotion to Houston Division Manager. This role required him to purchase home lots in the newly developed master planned community of The Woodlands. Through this work, he met with executives at The Woodlands Development Company and in 1985, accepted a position on their team and relocated his family to the community. This began a 36-year career that led him to serve as the Co-President of The Woodlands Development Company, a wholly-owned subsidiary of The Howard Hughes Corporation. Welbes’ work in The Woodlands has led him to serve on various Boards, including United Way of Montgomery County, The South Montgomery County YMCA, Interfaith of The Woodlands, The Montgomery County Community Foundation, The Greater Houston Builders Association. He has devoted countless hours to guiding not only these nonprofit organizations, but also ensuring that Mr. Mitchell’s vision for The Woodlands continues.

Pictured L-R: Jim Carman, President, Houston Region, The Howard Hughes Corporation; Missy Herndon, President & CEO, Interfaith of The Woodlands; Tim Welbes, 2022 Hometown Hero, Peg Welbes; Robert Heineman, 2019 Hometown Hero; Lorrie Parise, Director of PR & Community Relations, The Howard Hughes Corporation

Canopy Cancer Survivorship Center

Canopy Cancer Survivorship Center at Memorial Hermann The Woodlands Medical Center is one of two survivorship centers in the state of Texas, and the only one serving the greater Houston area. Founded in 2016, Canopy has provided free programs and services to cancer survivors, patients and their families, regardless of where they are in their journeys or where they are receiving treatment. Their strong community connection and compassionate support system make it possible for Canopy to provide programs geared towards improving the health and quality of life of cancer survivors post-diagnosis. Led by a volunteer team of over 70 individuals, Canopy offers 75 programs each month ranging from Art Therapy, Cooking and Yoga classes to consultations with oncology nurse navigators, numerous support groups, and a salon for wig, breast prosthesis and bra fittings. In five short years, Canopy has become one of the preeminent leaders in survivorship centers, welcoming guests from around the region to learn more about the culture and programming they have created. Canopy is pioneering the effort to change the conversation about what survivorship means, seeking to not only support individuals during their continued medical plans of care, but also caring for them spiritually and emotionally. Visitors to Canopy instantly find a second family to walk alongside each patient, caregiver and family member through one of life’s most challenging medical diagnoses.

Pictured L-R, Front Row: Catherine Giegerich, Vice President & Chief Nursing Officer, Memorial Hermann The Woodlands Medical Center; Justin Kendrick, Senior Vice President & Chief Executive Officer, Memorial Hermann The Woodlands Medical Center; Amanda Poole, Manager, Canopy Cancer Survivorship Center; Lucy Gomez, Vice President Programs & Operations, Interfaith of The Woodlands Back Row: Missy Herndon, President & CEO, Interfaith of The Woodlands; Linda Nelson, Director of Business Development, Memorial Hermann The Woodlands Medical Center  pictured with staff and volunteers.

Texas Children’s Hospital The Woodlands

Texas Children’s Hospital The Woodlands has seen exponential growth since opening its doors in 2016. The expert pediatric care offered at this 74-bed hospital means patients don’t need to drive into the Texas Medical Center for top-tier treatment. It is the area's first true, freestanding pediatric hospital designed, equipped and staffed exclusively to treat children and adolescents. The 22-acre site includes the only pediatric Level IV trauma center in the north region of Houston, a recently recertified Level III Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, and the Texas Children's Urgent Care Clinic. It is the first local pediatric hospital to receive accreditation by the American College of Radiology. The hospital is widely recognized for its state-of-the-art orthopedic surgery and care, and is home to more than 41 pediatric subspecialties including Cancer and Hematology, Bariatric Surgery, Infectious Disease and Sports Medicine. No other pediatric hospital in the country is a national medical partner of the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee, treating the unique sport-related ailments of high level, competitive athletes. Additionally, Texas Children’s Hospital The Woodlands is proud to have administered more than 32,000 COVID-19 vaccinations since January of 2021, following pediatric patient approval by the CDC.

Pictured L-R: Michelle Riley-Brown, President, Texas Children’s Hospital The Woodlands; Ketrese White, Vice President, Texas Children’s Hospital The Woodlands; Missy Herndon, President & CEO, Interfaith of The Woodlands

Interfaith of The Woodlands is a nonprofit social service agency providing programs and services to meet the needs of The Woodlands and surrounding area. Interfaith provides basic needs assistance and special programs to families experiencing financial crisis, and supportive service through care and wellness programs to senior adults, in addition to many community programs dedicated to improving the lives of individuals in need. For more information on Interfaith’s programs and services, or to become a volunteer, please visit woodlandsinterfaith.org or call 281-367-1230.  

INTERFAITH ANNOUNCES COMMUNITY-WIDE HOLIDAY GIVING CAMPAIGN

THE WOODLANDS, TX (Monday, November 8, 2021) – As the 2021 holiday season approaches, Interfaith of The Woodlands is making plans to assist families, children and seniors in need through the annual Interfaith Holiday GIVING programs. Interfaith invites our community to celebrate with the gift of giving by participating in the Holiday GIVING programs, each of which helps brighten the holiday season with gifts and food for our neighbors in need: Adopt-A-Family, Toy Drive, and Gifts For Seniors. Each program enables Interfaith, with the help of our generous community and volunteers, to meet the very specific needs of those in need this holiday season. Adopt-A-Family program matches community sponsors to families in need of help. Interfaith provides a list of gift ideas for the sponsored family members. Holiday Toy Drive offers the community an opportunity to collect toys for children of all ages. Families requesting assistance are able to choose gifts for their children from a variety of donated toys. Gifts for Seniors program provides hand-delivered holiday gifts to senior adults, ages 62 and older, in need of holiday cheer. Interfaith invites all community members to hold food drives and collect non-perishable items to fill our pantry shelves. This is especially a great time to collect holiday food items. Click here to see our Holiday Food Pantry needs. In addition, Interfaith will be accepting Walmart gift cards in $25 increments and grocery gift cards in $20 increments to distribute to our families and seniors for holiday assistance. If your business or organization would like to hold a food, toy or gift card drive, Interfaith can provide you with a list of suggestions. “Each year, thousands of children and Seniors receive food, gifts and holiday cheer through Interfaith, donated by our amazing community,” said Missy Herndon, President and CEO, Interfaith of The Woodlands. “Our goal is the bring people together in the name of service. We believe everyone deserves to celebrate the holidays, feel loved and cared for. Our programs and wonderful donors make that mission possible.” For details on all Interfaith Holiday GIVING programs, including how to get involved, important dates and contacts, or for assistance, please visit woodlandsinterfaith.org/holidaygiving or call 281-367-1230. Interfaith of The Woodlands is a nonprofit social service agency providing programs and services to meet the needs of The Woodlands and surrounding area. Interfaith provides basic needs assistance and special programs to families experiencing financial crisis, and supportive service through care and wellness programs to senior adults, in addition to many community programs dedicated to improving the lives of individuals in need. For more information on Interfaith’s programs and services, or to become a volunteer, please visit woodlandsinterfaith.org or call 281-367-1230.

INTERFAITH ANNOUNCES APPOINTMENT TO SENIOR LEADERSHIP TEAM

The Woodlands, TX (Thursday, September 16, 2021) —Interfaith of The Woodlands is pleased to announce the appointment of Jennifer Huffine, as Co-Director of Programs and Services. Huffine has over 10 years of nonprofit experience and 25 years of management and project management experience. She will join current Director of Programs and Services, Holly Mayer, and is a welcomed addition to the Senior Leadership team who leads Interfaith as it moves into its 48th year of serving South Montgomery County. “Jennifer’s extensive knowledge and hands-on approach to program development and execution, as well as her personal desire to meet the ever-growing and changing needs of our community, makes her an incredible fit to co-lead our efforts to provide every neighbor with essential, basic needs so they can live self-sufficiently,” shared Missy Herndon, Interfaith of The Woodlands President & CEO. Prior to joining Interfaith, Huffine was the Director of Operations and Programs at Community Assistance Center and Marketing Manager at Montgomery County United Way. She is a 2015 graduate of Leadership Montgomery County and served on the Montgomery County Food Bank Impact Council and Texas A&M Agrilife Extension Leadership Advisory Board. She is married to Michael Huffine and they have 5 children. “I am very excited to be joining such a dynamic team of leaders here at Interfaith. The impact that this team makes within our community is incredible and I am honored to be a small part of that work,” said Jennifer Huffine, Interfaith of The Woodlands Director of Programs and Services. Her many years of experience give her the ideal perspective to take on the role of Co-Director of Programs and Services at Interfaith of The Woodlands that will further our mission of bringing people together to build and more loving and caring community through service. About Interfaith of The Woodlands: Interfaith of The Woodlands is a non-profit social service agency providing numerous programs and services to meet the needs of The Woodlands and surrounding area. For more information on Interfaith’s programs and services, or to become a volunteer, please visit: woodlandsinterfaith.org or call 281-367-1230.

GIVING GOES GLAM DONATES OVER 200 MEALS TO LOCAL HOSPITALS

The Woodlands, TX (August 30, 2021) The Giving Goes Glam virtual event benefiting Interfaith of The Woodlands and Junior League of The Woodlands was held on Friday, August 27th. Sponsors and guests attended watch parties to view this year’s Giving Goes Glam with special remarks from Master of Ceremonies, Ian Ramirez, Co-chairs – Erin Doré and Brianna Masterson, President and CEO of Interfaith of The Woodlands, Missy Herndon and 2020-2021 President of Junior League of The Woodlands, Jennifer Sheehan. Presenting Sponsor St. Luke’s Health and Exclusive Automotive Sponsor, SEWELL Automotive Companies, were joined by dozens of other generous businesses and individuals who made this event possible. Many sponsors and guests chose to graciously donate over 200 meals to local hospitals. Meals prepared by The Woodlands Waterway Marriott Hotel & Convention Center were delivered to Houston Methodist The Woodlands Hospital, St. Luke’s Health and Memorial Hermann The Woodlands Medical Center. Ticket holders enjoyed a New York–style runway show highlighting the latest fashion trends by Saks Fifth Avenue, styled by renowned Houston fashion event producer, Lenny Matuszewski and Senior Fashion Stylist, Tamara Klosz Bonar. Special highlights of the show were the 12 community models, each celebrated for their exemplary volunteerism and service on behalf of Interfaith and Junior League. Jennifer Bulovas, Carol Durkee, Alison Judge, Michelle Little, Chad Miller, Kathryne Pruitt, Katie Schonert, Brooke Schmitt, Mike Seder, Lonny Soza, Rikki Speck and Blake Wilcox were honored for their long-standing commitment to various philanthropic activities throughout the region. The Woodlands “hometown” social service organization, Interfaith of The Woodlands, continues its tradition of helping our neighbors in need through extensive programs, services, and projects directly developed out of community need. For more information on Interfaith’s programs and services or to become a volunteer, please visit woodlandsinterfaith.org or call 281-367-1230. Junior League of The Woodlands is an organization of women committed to promoting voluntarism, developing the potential of women and improving communities through the effective action and leadership of trained volunteers. Its purpose is exclusively educational and charitable. For information on Junior League of The Woodlands, please visit jlthewoodlands.org or call 281-376-5754.

LOCAL AGENCIES JOIN FORCES TO HELP STUDENTS IN MONTGOMERY COUNTY PREPARE FOR A SUCCESSFUL SCHOOL YEAR

THE WOODLANDS, TX – (August 3, 2021) Community Assistance Center and Interfaith of The Woodlands joined forces last Saturday for a Back to School Event at The Ark Church in Conroe, TX. Hundreds of cars lined the parking lot while families waited for school supply packs for grades Pre-K – 12th. Volunteers for The Ark Church along with staff from both nonprofits distributed 1,379 school supply packs, backpacks and snacks to children in Montgomery County. As families continue to be impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic or just struggling to make ends meet, the school supply assistance through Community Assistance Center and Interfaith of The Woodlands provided children the confidence to start the 2021-2022 school year prepared. “I am grateful to a community of caring neighbors and donors who continue to support our efforts to help families in need,” said Missy Herndon, President and CEO, Interfaith of The Woodlands. “Between their support, and the collaboration with Community Assistance Center and The Ark Church, nearly 1,400 children in our County will be able to start school, prepared for success, like their peers. I am so proud of the teams who came together to make this endeavor possible and look forward to growing the event in the coming years.” “We are so grateful for the opportunity to partner with Interfaith of The Woodlands and the Ark Church for this Back to School distribution! We are focused on strengthening our collaborative efforts throughout Montgomery County and this has been a great start to reaching our goal of bringing many more entities together next year in efforts to provide County wide event for students and their families to receive all the help and resources they need to start the school year off ready for success,” shared Jennifer Landers, Executive Director of Community Assistance Center. About Community Assistance Center: Community Assistance Center has proudly served Montgomery County since 1981. They are a non-profit 501(c)(3) social services organization that provides basic needs services and long-term case management to individuals and families throughout Montgomery County who are struggling through times of financial hardships. For more information, visit cac-mctx.org or call 936-539- 1096. About Interfaith of The Woodlands: Interfaith of The Woodlands is a non-profit social service agency providing numerous programs and services to meet the needs of The Woodlands and surrounding area. For more information on Interfaith’s programs and services, or to become a volunteer, please visit: woodlandsinterfaith.org or call 281-367-1230.

GIVING GOES GLAM ANNOUNCES 2021 EVENT

THE WOODLANDS, TX (July 29, 2021) — Interfaith of The Woodlands and Junior League of The Woodlands are thrilled to announce the return of Giving Goes Glam, a Fashion Show and Luncheon, on Friday, August 27, 2021. Presenting Sponsor St. Luke’s Health and Exclusive Automotive Sponsor, SEWELL Automotive Companies, are joined by dozens of other generous businesses and individuals who make this event possible year after year. Guests to the event will enjoy a New York–style runway show highlighting the latest fashion trends by Saks Fifth Avenue, styled by renowned Houston fashion event producer, Lenny Matuszewski and Senior Fashion Stylist, Tamara Klosz Bonar.   Special highlights of the show are the 12 community models, each celebrated for their exemplary volunteerism and service on behalf of Interfaith and Junior League. Jennifer Bulovas, Carol Durkee, Alison Judge, Michelle Little, Chad Miller, Kathryne Pruitt, Katie Schonert, Brooke Schmitt, Mike Seder, Lonny Soza, Rikki Speck and Blake Wilcox will be honored for their long-standing commitment to various philanthropic activities throughout the region. Along with their planning committee, event co-chairs, Erin Doré and Brianna Masterson, are looking forward to bringing the community back together after an especially challenging 18 months. The perfect combination of fashion and philanthropy, Giving Goes Glam proceeds benefit the missions of both organizations, providing programs and services for the North Harris and South Montgomery County communities. “In a year when everything felt different, the strength and dedication of Junior League of The Woodlands remained constant to motivate, inspire, and going all in with recruiting, engagement, and raising vital funds to assist our community partners. The League is so grateful for the support of both our Members and community and look forward to recognizing those who have done so much to bring our Mission to life," adds Jennifer Sheehan, Junior League of The Woodlands Immediate Past President. Missy Herndon, President & CEO of Interfaith of The Woodlands shares, “Giving Goes Glam has been a marquee event in The Woodlands since 2012, and like most all social events, was not held in 2020. This year’s event is the perfect opportunity to celebrate with gratitude the incredible community spirit that surrounds Interfaith as we continue to feed our neighbors and keep families in their homes. We are tremendously grateful for the support from our generous volunteers, friends and neighbors and the impact this event continues to have on our neighbors in need.” For sponsorship opportunities, guest tickets or more event details, please visit givinggoesglam.org or contact Carolyn Donovan, Interfaith of The Woodlands’ Director of Development, at development@woodlandsinterfaith.org or 832-615-8225. The Woodlands “hometown” social service organization, Interfaith of The Woodlands, continues its tradition of helping our neighbors in need through extensive programs, services, and projects directly developed out of community need. For more information on Interfaith’s programs and services or to become a volunteer, please visit woodlandsinterfaith.org or call 281-367-1230. Junior League of The Woodlands is an organization of women committed to promoting voluntarism, developing the potential of women and improving communities through the effective action and leadership of trained volunteers. Its purpose is exclusively educational and charitable. For information on Junior League of The Woodlands, please visit jlthewoodlands.org or call 281-376-5754.

WASTE CONNECTIONS GOLF CLASSIC FOR KIDS DONATES $100,000 TO HELP FUND PROGRAMS FOR CHILDREN

THE WOODLANDS, TX – (June 9, 2021) Interfaith of The Woodlands is a grateful beneficiary of the 13th annual Waste Connections Golf Classic for Kids, receiving $100,000 to fund basic needs assistance services for children and families in South Montgomery County. The gift comes to Interfaith of The Woodlands during a time of expected high community need, as families continue to rebuild after the winter storm, recover from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and enter the summer months. “Summer is a challenge as many families with children struggle to provide daily meals, snacks and supervised care when students are not in school. This generous gift from Waste Connections will help feed food-insecure families and keep them in their homes with rent/mortgage and utility payment assistance. These funds will also support the Kits 4 Kidz School Supplies Assistance Program providing supplies and backpacks for the new school year and support Interfaith’s weekend nutrition program for students when they return to the classroom. We are deeply grateful for Waste Connections’ continued support of our goal to support families in need in our community,” shared Missy Herndon, President & CEO, Interfaith of The Woodlands. Interfaith’s Kits 4 Kidz School Supplies Assistance Program recently kicked off its community drives, collecting supplies and backpacks to prepare to support more than 2,000 students as they return to school in August. The Interfaith Food Pantry Program continues to support over 500 local families each month with groceries to make 4-6 meals, toiletries, paper goods, cleaning products, baby care items and produce from the Veggie Villages. “For the past 13 years, our vendors, employees and volunteers have united together in support of this event, raising critical funds for dozens of worthwhile organizations. We are truly grateful for their continued generosity and humbled by the positive impact on the lives of so many children and families throughout Montgomery County because of this Tournament,” shared Michelle Little, Executive Director with Waste Connections. About Waste Connections: Waste Connections is an integrated solid waste services company that provides non-hazardous waste collection, transfer and disposal services, along with resource recovery primarily through recycling and renewable fuels generation. The Company serves more than seven million residential, commercial and industrial customers in mostly exclusive and secondary markets across 43 states in the U.S. and six provinces in Canada. Waste Connections also provides non-hazardous oilfield waste treatment, recovery and disposal services in several basins across the U.S., as well as intermodal services for the movement of cargo and solid waste containers in the Pacific Northwest. For more information, visit Waste Connections at www.wasteconnections.com. About Interfaith of The Woodlands: Interfaith of The Woodlands is a non-profit social service agency providing numerous programs and services to meet the needs of The Woodlands and surrounding area. For more information on Interfaith’s programs and services, or to become a volunteer, please visit: woodlandsinterfaith.org or call 281-367-1230.

THE WOODLANDS CELEBRATION OF EXCELLENCE GALA IS SET FOR OCTOBER AND NOW ACCEPTING HOMETOWN HERO NOMINATIONS

THE WOODLANDS, TX (Thursday, April 29, 2021) – The Woodlands Celebration of Excellence Gala will be held on Saturday, October 2nd at The Woodlands Waterway Marriott Hotel and Convention Center. After a difficult year, the Gala returns to honor our Hometown Heroes and recognize the contribution by so many that has made The Woodlands the vibrant community it is today. The event was created in 1999 in conjunction with The Woodlands’ 25th Anniversary where Mr. George P. Mitchell inducted the first class of Hometown Heroes. Since that time, 139 individuals, businesses, non-profit organizations have received the honor. “The Woodlands has been blessed with dynamic visionaries who have not only contributed to its economic development, but who have also given much of their time in service to others,” remarked Missy Herndon, President and CEO of Interfaith of The Woodlands. “The past twelve months have created numerous challenges for so many; and as result, Interfaith has served a record numbers of individuals and families who are facing unemployment for the first time in their lives. Through the generosity of this community, each client has received the help they needed and the encouragement to begin a new journey. Through all of the difficulties, we have witnessed acts of kindness each and every day, making this year’s Gala a fitting tribute to our tight knit community.” Together with Interfaith’s Board of Directors, led by Chair William H. Murphy, Gala Co-Chairs DeAnn Guidry and Nicole Murphy are planning a heartfelt evening, celebrating the newest Hometown Heroes, and honoring the compassion the South Montgomery County has shown to its neighbors throughout the Coronavirus pandemic. Hometown Hero nominations are open through 5:00 pm on Monday, May 31st. The nomination form, along with The Celebration of Excellence Gala details, can be found at hometownheroesgala.org.  Nominations can be submitted online, digitally to nominations@woodlandsinterfaith.org or mailed to Hometown Hero Selection Committee, c/o Interfaith of The Woodlands, 4242 Interfaith Way, The Woodlands, TX  77381. Questions on nominations or the Gala can be directed to Carolyn Donovan, Director of Development, at development@woodlandsinterfaith.org or 832-615-8225. Interfaith of The Woodlands is a nonprofit social service agency providing numerous programs and services to meet the needs of The Woodlands and surrounding area. For more information on Interfaith’s programs and services or to become a volunteer, please visit woodlandsinterfaith.org or call 281-367-1230.

INTERFAITH OF THE WOODLANDS LAUNCHES RECOVERY RESPONSE TO WINTER STORM DISASTER

February 19, 2021
Press
THE WOODLANDS, TX (February 19, 2021) – Interfaith of The Woodlands, The Woodlands Hometown nonprofit, launched its disaster response to assist neighbors affected by the record-breaking winter storm that polarized Montgomery County this past week. Interfaith opened its doors yesterday to assist neighbors with food, grocery gift cards and gas cards. Families will continue to be served Monday – Friday, 9am to 4pm by curbside and by drive through Food Distribution Wednesdays from 9am - 1pm at 4242 Interfaith Way. Families and individuals suffering loss through the storm may apply for crisis assistance, including rent/mortgage and utility assistance, gas cards, clothing vouchers and prescription assistance by emailing fs@woodlandsinterfaith.org or by calling 281-367-1230 during office hours, Monday - Friday 9am - 4pm. Missy Herndon, President & CEO of Interfaith of The Woodlands, shared, “As we approach the end of the month, we anticipate a high volume of residents that will seek assistance not only for basic needs, but for rent, mortgage and utilities as they face the mounting insurance deductibles and replacing items lost to water or fire damage. For the past 47 years, our goal has been to help neighbors in crisis and we will continue our efforts to meet the needs of those experiencing difficulties during this challenging time.” Interfaith’s Senior Services team continues to make wellness calls to check on senior neighbors affected by power outages. Additionally, Senior Grocery Delivery is ongoing as needed for vulnerable neighbors. Interfaith is in need of non-perishable food and monetary donations. Food donations can be delivered to Interfaith at 4242 Interfaith Way beginning Monday, February 22, during regular office hours. Monetary donations can be made online: Woodlandsinterfaith.org. Herndon shared, “I am always amazed by our community. From hurricanes, floods, fires, the COVID-19 pandemic and now a historic Arctic storm; we come together to help fellow neighbors and help Interfaith continue our very worthy mission of building a more loving and caring community through service.” About Interfaith of The Woodlands: Interfaith of The Woodlands is a non-profit social service agency providing numerous programs and services to meet the needs of The Woodlands and surrounding area. For more information on Interfaith’s programs and services, or to become a volunteer, please visit: https://woodlandsinterfaith.org or call 281-367-1230.

Interfaith of The Woodlands Announces New Board of Directors

THE WOODLANDS, TX – Interfaith of The Woodlands announces new Board of Directors, Board Chair and Interfaith Young Professionals Board. William H. Murphy is serving as Interfaith of The Woodlands Board Chair for 2021-2022 and recently appointed Jim Carman, Justin Kendrick, and Tony Torres to the Interfaith Board at the annual board retreat in January. “We are so fortunate to have an incredible Board of Directors for both Interfaith of The Woodlands and Interfaith Young Professionals that support Interfaith in every way by actively supporting Interfaith with their service, leadership and guidance,” said Missy Herndon, President & CEO of Interfaith of The Woodlands. Ian Ramirez, President of Interfaith Young Professional’s Board of Directors is serving along with Will Warren - Vice President, Brittany Brewer - Secretary, Terri Arora – Membership Chair, Ciana Cortez -  Events Chair and Ashley Byers, Immediate Past President. Outgoing board members were recognized for their past service with appreciation to Josh Urban, 2020 Interfaith Board Chairman and Ashley Byers, 2020 Interfaith Young Professionals President. “We are grateful for Josh Urban's guidance and leadership this past year on Interfaith's Board of Directors that contributed to Interfaith's success,” said William H. Murphy, 2021 Chairman, Interfaith of The Woodlands Board of Directors. Herndon shared, “Ashley Byers was also thanked for her dedication to Interfaith Young Professionals and leading the group in 2020.” “Interfaith of The Woodlands has been the heart of this community for more than 47 years. We have outstanding leadership and look forward to continuing to strengthen relations between our member congregations, corporations and civic groups and further Interfaith's mission of building a more loving and caring community through service," shared Murphy. About Interfaith of The Woodlands: Interfaith of The Woodlands is a non-profit social service agency providing numerous programs and services to meet the needs of The Woodlands and surrounding area since 1973. For more information on Interfaith’s programs and services, or to become a volunteer, please visit: https://woodlandsinterfaith.org or call 281-367-1230. About Interfaith Young Professionals: Interfaith Young Professonals (IYP) is a membership-based group created to educate, motivate and cultivate the next generation of volunteers. It is a professional organization focused on service with opportunities for leadership, social events, seminars and more. For more information or to join Interfaith Young Professionals, please email iyp@woodlandsinterfaith.org.
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Interfaith’s 48th Anniversary

Be a part of Interfaith’s 48th Anniversary by donating food or hosting a food drive! To see a complete list of items needed for Interfaith Food Pantry, click here. We will collect food throughout November and December for the Anniversary Food Drive.

Read Fall 2021 Issue »

Remembering Reverend Don Gebert

Reverend Don Gebert, Interfaith’s Founding Executive Director, passed away last month at the age of 91. “He was a man of great compassion and kindness. He was a mentor and friend to our Interfaith family and will always live in our hearts. We are honored and privileged to carry on his great legacy of caring,” shared Missy Herndon, President & CEO, Interfaith of The Woodlands.

Read Spring 2021 Issue »

Celebrate with the Gift of Giving!

November kicked off our Holiday GIVING Programs. See information on how you can help neighbors this holiday season with toys for families, gifts for Seniors and food pantry assistance.

Read November 2020 Issue »

Happy Holidays: Thank you to all of our donors and volunteers!

November was a month to be thankful, and we are humbled by our neighbors and community partners who have given so much to Interfaith this past month, from Food Pantry donations to participating in Holiday GIVING to volunteering your time.

Read December 2018 Issue »

2018 Celebration of Excellence Gala Honoring our Hometown Heroes

October was a show-stopping month of service and giving! Thanks to our community, Interfaith was able to honor our 2018 Hometown Heroes, all while raising vital funds for local families in need. A very special thank you to our generous supporters, including Presenting Sponsor Woodforest National Bank. We raised $750,000…

Read November 2018 Issue »

Interfaith Celebrates Day of Caring: A Community-Wide Food Drive

We hosted a community-wide food drive to celebrate Interfaith’s 45th anniversary. So many volunteers and community members came out to offer their support and to drop off food donations, and we just wanted to say Thank You for Caring!

Read October 2018 Issue »

Kits 4 Kidz Gives to over 2,100 Children!

Interfaith was filled with the sound of laughter and excitement as over 2,100 children received backpacks and school supplies as part of our annual Kits 4 Kidz program. Thank you to The Woodlands community for donating and volunteering to help students in need.

Read September 2018 Issue »

2018 Hometown Heroes Selected

Congratulations to the five individuals, one corporation and one nonprofit organization for being selected as the 2018 Hometown Heroes: Robert Heineman, Steve Leakey, Dr. Joel Reed, Patti Rivela, Mrs. Brynn Ballard Huntsman and Mr. Peter Huntsman, Entergy Texas, Inc. and The Junior League of The Woodlands.

Read August 2018 Issue »

Kits 4 Kidz Community-Wide School Supply Drive Kicks Off

Interfaith kicked off Kits 4 Kidz school supply drive!  Supplies being collected include markers, crayons, scissors, glue, pencils, pens, map pencils, copy paper, notebook paper, binders, pocket folders, pencil boxes/bags and backpacks.

Read July 2018 Issue »

ON THE GO Mobile Food Pantry

Throughout the year, Interfaith takes its Food Pantry on the road to provide for our neighbors in need. Recently,  Interfaith distributed 100 boxes of fruits and vegetables, provided by the Montgomery County Food Bank, to 539 individuals at Mission Woods Apartment Complex!

Read June 2018 Issue »

IRONMAN Texas

Thank you to all our IRONMAN Volunteers that not only served our athletes from near and far, but helped raise much needed funding for our many Programs and Services! Interfaith had 461 volunteers log over 2,000 volunteer hours for IRONMAN Texas!

Read May 2018 Issue »

Food Pantry Remodel and Reveal

The Interfaith Food Pantry has recently remodeled and upgraded their refrigeration area to accommodate protein rich perishable foods, such as frozen meats and dairy in addition to the fresh produce harvested at both Veggie Village Community Donation Gardens.

Read April 2018 Issue »

John Cooper Empty Bowls Project

Each year, students from The John Cooper School National Art Honor Society create hundreds of bowls in an effort to raise funds to combat hunger in the community. The bowls are part of their Annual Empty Bowls Project where guests were invited to donate $10…

Read March 2018 Issue »

Interfaith Announces 2017 Board Chair Debbie Sukin

Board members joined clergy from our Member Congregations at Interfaith’s Annual Meeting in December. Debbie Sukin was announced as the 2017 Board Chair and Ray Sanders will move to the Ex-Officio.

Read January 2017 Issue »

The annual Caregivers Conference returns to Christ Church United Methodist in a new format on Saturday, November 6th, from 8:30 am to 1:00 pm.
Any family member caring for a loved one will find the conference both informative and useful in skill-building, divided into 3 sessions specific to the many questions a caregiver may have.

Read Fall 2021 Issue »

School Supplies Program

Interfaith of The Woodlands annual Kits 4 Kidz School Supplies program offers assistance to families needing help with school supplies for the upcoming school year.

Read Summer 2021 Issue »

Clergy Invited to Symposium

Faith Communities: Emerging from the COVID-19 Crisis
Clergy Care: Survive and Thrive Through the Emergence
Tuesday, May 11, 2021
Reception & Breakfast: 8:30 am
Symposium: 9:30 am – 11:00 am
Led by Mike Bonem

Read Spring 2021 Issue »

Holiday GIIVING

Please help Interfaith brighten the Holiday Season in our community by offering your support. Holiday GIVING provides families, children and Seniors with gifts and food to make their Holiday season special through our Toy Drive and Gifts for Seniors Programs.
 
Interfaith Family Services provides holiday gifts to families through the Holiday Toy Drive, a program in which the community comes together to donate new toys and gift cards for children and teens. Interfaith Senior Services provides holiday gifts for senior adults, 62 and older though the Gifts for Seniors Program. Each family receiving Holiday assistance is given food pantry staples and holiday foods to prepare a traditional Holiday Meal with our Food Pantry Assistance.

Read Fall 2020 issue »

FaithsTogether 20th Annual Giving Thanks Observance

FaithsTogether held their 20th Annual Giving Thanks Observance! People of all backgrounds came together at The Woodlands Community Presbyterian Church for a beautiful celebration of the season! Thank you, FaithsTogether, for all your hard work in putting together such an inspiring program, which included…

Read December 2018 Issue »

2018 Celebration of Excellence Gala Honoring our Hometown Heroes

October was a show-stopping month of service and giving! Thanks to our community, Interfaith was able to honor our 2018 Hometown Heroes, all while raising vital funds for local families in need. A very special thank you to our generous supporters, including Presenting Sponsor Woodforest National Bank. We raised $750,000…

Read November 2018 Issue »

Interfaith Celebrates Day of Caring: A Community-Wide Food Drive

We hosted a community-wide food drive to celebrate Interfaith’s 45th anniversary. So many volunteers and community members came out to offer their support and to drop off food donations, and we just wanted to say Thank You for Caring!

Read October 2018 Issue »

Kits 4 Kidz Gives to over 2,100 Children!

Interfaith was filled with the sound of laughter and excitement as over 2,100 children received backpacks and school supplies as part of our annual Kits 4 Kidz program. Thank you to The Woodlands community for donating and volunteering to help students in need.

Read September 2018 Issue »

Thank You!

We’re halfway through 2018, and we want to say Thank You to our member congregations for an outstanding year of service so far.

Read August 2018 Issue »

Happy Birthday to our founding Executive Director

Gebert turned 89 in June, and Interfaith is proud to have been pioneered by this great man. We thank Rev. Gebert for building the foundation that we now call Interfaith!

Read July 2018 Issue »

May Missions Fair

Interfaith was proud to attend the May Missions Fair of The Woodlands First Baptist Church. Thank you to Senior Pastor and Interfaith Board Member, Dr. Bruce Webb, for your hospitality.

Read June 2018 Issue »

Veggie Village Volunteers

Youth from The Woodlands United Methodist Church Youth weeded and mulched garden beds in preparation of the summer harvest season at Veggie Village Wendtwoods.

Read May 2018 Issue »

Reverend Don Gebert Speaks to IYP at Inaugural Event

Reverend Gebert delivered a powerful message sharing the history of The Woodlands and the integral part Interfaith plays in our community. He inspired the audience of all ages to never give up on their dreams.

Read April 2018 Issue »

Senior Clergy Attend Interfaith Board of Directors Retreat

Interfaith’s Board of Directors is comprised of 27 individuals who jointly oversee the activities of the organization, including nine Senior Clergy representing member congregations.

Read March 2018 Issue »

INTERFAITH OF THE WOODLANDS ANNOUNCES 2022 HOMETOWN HEROES

The Woodlands, TX (Thursday, November 19, 2021) —Interfaith of The Woodlands is honored to announce the selection of the 2022 Hometown Heroes. The tradition of Hometown Heroes began in 1999, in celebration of The Woodlands 25th Anniversary. This year, four individuals and two organizations have been named to the distinguished list of Heroes, each recognized in a unique way for the lasting impact they have made on The Woodlands community. Paula Klapesky, Walt Lisiewski, Tim Welbes, Canopy Cancer Survivorship Center, Texas Children’s Hospital The Woodlands and an anonymous recipient will officially join 140 other distinguished individuals, businesses and organizations as Hometown Heroes during The Woodlands Celebration of Excellence Gala on Friday, April 1, 2022. Recognized for their many contributions to the community, these honorees have each demonstrated exemplary leadership and a dedication to preserving Mr. George P. Mitchell’s vision for The Woodlands community. The Woodlands Celebration of Excellence Gala will also pay a special tribute to the late Reverend Don Gebert. A member of the first class of Hometown Heroes, Gebert was also the Founding Executive Director of Interfaith of The Woodlands and worked closely with Mr. Mitchell to establish The Woodlands. In addition to these honors, the Gala will feature dinner, a live auction and an after party headlined by The Bucktown All-Stars. “We are truly excited to bring our community back together at The Woodlands Celebration of Excellence Gala, after a two-year absence. This event is rooted in celebrating our hometown, as well as our neighbors who go above and beyond in service to others. The last two years have shown us the true importance of personal connections, not only for our well-being, but also for the growth and prosperity of our region. We look forward to celebrating all of our Hometown Heroes, while remembering those that have come before us, whose contributions have created this very special place we call home,” shared Missy Herndon, President & CEO of Interfaith of The Woodlands. Criteria for the selection of the Hometown Heroes includes: serving as a positive role model, having a history of volunteerism, sacrificing personal gain to achieve noble goals, exhibiting leadership and courage and embodying the values of The Woodlands community. Nominations are open to the community and presented to a selection committee comprised of previously awarded Hometown Heroes.  The Woodlands Celebration of Excellence Gala is the largest annual fundraiser for Interfaith of The Woodlands. Generously sponsored by dozens of local businesses and organizations, all proceeds benefit Interfaith’s community programs and services. For sponsorship opportunities or individual tickets, please visit hometownheroesgala.org or contact Carolyn Donovan, Interfaith’s Director of Development, at development@woodlandsinterfaith.org or at 832-615-8225.

Paula Klapesky

Since the third grade, Paula Klapesky knew she wanted to be a teacher. She found a way to lead any activity she was a part of, and by the time she was in college had set her sights on becoming a school principal. After achieving her degree, Klapesky began her career as a 3rd grade teacher in Humble ISD.  Encouraged by her then Principal, she began working on a Master’s degree in educational administration. During that time, she met her future husband, who was a teacher and coach in Conroe ISD. Together, they completed graduate school and began a marriage that has endured for more than 33 years. Klapesky moved to Conroe ISD and taught at both the elementary and intermediate school levels before accepting the role of Assistant Principal at Collins Intermediate.  Next, she joined the team who would open Mitchell Intermediate School, serving as the Assistant Principal for two years, and then becoming the Principal, where she has led thousands of children through their 5th and 6th grade experience for the last 24 years. Beyond her caring and nurturing nature, parents remark that Klapesky not only ensures that all students achieve academically, they also learn to believe in themselves and find the drive to reach their goals. Under her leadership, students are reminded that they must always be true to themselves, and always remember their neighbor while they set-out on the path of life. In today’s challenging environment, pre-teens are faced with challenges to their emotional health and social well-being. Paula Klapesky meticulously boosts these traits, while emphasizing a delicate balance between their extracurricular activities and academics. Outside of school, Klapesky and her husband, Larry, raised three children in The Woodlands, where each attended schools within the Conroe ISD system. With her husband serving as an Assistant Principal at The Woodlands High School, both were actively involved in their children’s lives. Now her oldest and his wife live in the community. Her daughter-in-law is a teacher in the Conroe ISD, her daughter is graduating from college in December and hopes to pursue a career in education, too. Her youngest is a photographer, videographer, and entrepreneur in the making. Klapesky’s next goal in life is to earn a Doctorate in Educational Leadership while continuing her role as Principal of her second home, Mitchell Intermediate School. Educational formats have changed quite a bit in the last 30 years, but Klapesky is bringing the same commitment to her coursework that she has brought to her students and family for the past three decades. She graduates in December 2023. Klapesky’s love for her profession is boundless, and she is proud to have spent a lifetime positively influencing her students. In a hometown that has given her and her family so very much, Klapesky intends to continue nurturing and shaping young minds to become the leaders of tomorrow.  

Pictured: Paula Klapesky, 2022 Hometown Hero, with husband, Larry, family members, and Missy Herndon, President & CEO, Interfaith of The Woodlands

Walt Lisiewski

After four years in the United States Navy, Lisiewski enrolled and graduated from the University of South Florida School of Engineering earning a B.S. in Electrical Engineering. Upon graduating, he began his career in Engineering Construction. Lisiewski was employed for 23 years with Brown & Root, Inc. working in the fields of design, construction, and maintenance of nuclear power and petro-chemical plants, pulp and paper mills, refineries, pipe lines, and other specialties. He was recruited by Jacobs Engineering for the position of Sr. Vice-President, North America, Construction and Maintenance. Lisiewski continued his career at Jacobs Engineering in this capacity for 12 years. His many duties included management and responsibility for a workforce of over 5,000 professionals. After 35 years and over 2,000,000 flight miles, it was time to retire. Lisiewski decided to dedicate his time in service to his community. Just a few of Lisiewski’s community service activities include: volunteering with Neighborhood Watch for the last 13 years, Director and Vice-President of Montgomery County, Municipal Utility District #1 (two terms), Chairman of Panther Creek Residential Design Standards committee, Panther Creek flea market, Chairman of The Woodlands Township - Development Standards Committee, The Woodlands Township 4th of July Parade, Panther Creek Village Association, One Water Task Force, Saints Simon & Jude Catholic Church Men’s Club, Habitat for Humanity, Voter Awareness Council, Founding Member of Township Future and Insperity Golf Tournament volunteer, earning his 10 year pin for service. Lisiewski and his wife, Louise, have been married 47 years. They have two adult children, two grandsons, and two grand-dogs. They have lived in The Woodlands for the past 32 years.

Pictured: Walt Lisiewski, 2022 Hometown Hero, with wife Louise and family

Tim Welbes

Tim Welbes and his wife, Peg, have made The Woodlands home since 1985, raising four children and welcoming eight grandchildren. A Houston native, Tim graduated from The University of Houston with a degree in Accounting and shortly thereafter, obtained his CPA certification. He began his career with Ernst & Ernst, working in their Houston office for five years, before accepting a role with a small CPA firm in Colorado. Houston quickly called him back home where he took a role with John Pace Homes as a new home sales consultant, ultimately becoming the Chief Executive Officer for the company. This led him to Standard Pacific Homes, where he began as a Sales and Marketing manager, eventually earning a promotion to Houston Division Manager. This role required him to purchase home lots in the newly developed master planned community of The Woodlands. Through this work, he met with executives at The Woodlands Development Company and in 1985, accepted a position on their team and relocated his family to the community. This began a 36-year career that led him to serve as the Co-President of The Woodlands Development Company, a wholly-owned subsidiary of The Howard Hughes Corporation. Welbes’ work in The Woodlands has led him to serve on various Boards, including United Way of Montgomery County, The South Montgomery County YMCA, Interfaith of The Woodlands, The Montgomery County Community Foundation, The Greater Houston Builders Association. He has devoted countless hours to guiding not only these nonprofit organizations, but also ensuring that Mr. Mitchell’s vision for The Woodlands continues.

Pictured L-R: Jim Carman, President, Houston Region, The Howard Hughes Corporation; Missy Herndon, President & CEO, Interfaith of The Woodlands; Tim Welbes, 2022 Hometown Hero, Peg Welbes; Robert Heineman, 2019 Hometown Hero; Lorrie Parise, Director of PR & Community Relations, The Howard Hughes Corporation

Canopy Cancer Survivorship Center

Canopy Cancer Survivorship Center at Memorial Hermann The Woodlands Medical Center is one of two survivorship centers in the state of Texas, and the only one serving the greater Houston area. Founded in 2016, Canopy has provided free programs and services to cancer survivors, patients and their families, regardless of where they are in their journeys or where they are receiving treatment. Their strong community connection and compassionate support system make it possible for Canopy to provide programs geared towards improving the health and quality of life of cancer survivors post-diagnosis. Led by a volunteer team of over 70 individuals, Canopy offers 75 programs each month ranging from Art Therapy, Cooking and Yoga classes to consultations with oncology nurse navigators, numerous support groups, and a salon for wig, breast prosthesis and bra fittings. In five short years, Canopy has become one of the preeminent leaders in survivorship centers, welcoming guests from around the region to learn more about the culture and programming they have created. Canopy is pioneering the effort to change the conversation about what survivorship means, seeking to not only support individuals during their continued medical plans of care, but also caring for them spiritually and emotionally. Visitors to Canopy instantly find a second family to walk alongside each patient, caregiver and family member through one of life’s most challenging medical diagnoses.

Pictured L-R, Front Row: Catherine Giegerich, Vice President & Chief Nursing Officer, Memorial Hermann The Woodlands Medical Center; Justin Kendrick, Senior Vice President & Chief Executive Officer, Memorial Hermann The Woodlands Medical Center; Amanda Poole, Manager, Canopy Cancer Survivorship Center; Lucy Gomez, Vice President Programs & Operations, Interfaith of The Woodlands Back Row: Missy Herndon, President & CEO, Interfaith of The Woodlands; Linda Nelson, Director of Business Development, Memorial Hermann The Woodlands Medical Center  pictured with staff and volunteers.

Texas Children’s Hospital The Woodlands

Texas Children’s Hospital The Woodlands has seen exponential growth since opening its doors in 2016. The expert pediatric care offered at this 74-bed hospital means patients don’t need to drive into the Texas Medical Center for top-tier treatment. It is the area's first true, freestanding pediatric hospital designed, equipped and staffed exclusively to treat children and adolescents. The 22-acre site includes the only pediatric Level IV trauma center in the north region of Houston, a recently recertified Level III Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, and the Texas Children's Urgent Care Clinic. It is the first local pediatric hospital to receive accreditation by the American College of Radiology. The hospital is widely recognized for its state-of-the-art orthopedic surgery and care, and is home to more than 41 pediatric subspecialties including Cancer and Hematology, Bariatric Surgery, Infectious Disease and Sports Medicine. No other pediatric hospital in the country is a national medical partner of the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee, treating the unique sport-related ailments of high level, competitive athletes. Additionally, Texas Children’s Hospital The Woodlands is proud to have administered more than 32,000 COVID-19 vaccinations since January of 2021, following pediatric patient approval by the CDC.

Pictured L-R: Michelle Riley-Brown, President, Texas Children’s Hospital The Woodlands; Ketrese White, Vice President, Texas Children’s Hospital The Woodlands; Missy Herndon, President & CEO, Interfaith of The Woodlands

Interfaith of The Woodlands is a nonprofit social service agency providing programs and services to meet the needs of The Woodlands and surrounding area. Interfaith provides basic needs assistance and special programs to families experiencing financial crisis, and supportive service through care and wellness programs to senior adults, in addition to many community programs dedicated to improving the lives of individuals in need. For more information on Interfaith’s programs and services, or to become a volunteer, please visit woodlandsinterfaith.org or call 281-367-1230.  

INTERFAITH ANNOUNCES COMMUNITY-WIDE HOLIDAY GIVING CAMPAIGN

THE WOODLANDS, TX (Monday, November 8, 2021) – As the 2021 holiday season approaches, Interfaith of The Woodlands is making plans to assist families, children and seniors in need through the annual Interfaith Holiday GIVING programs. Interfaith invites our community to celebrate with the gift of giving by participating in the Holiday GIVING programs, each of which helps brighten the holiday season with gifts and food for our neighbors in need: Adopt-A-Family, Toy Drive, and Gifts For Seniors. Each program enables Interfaith, with the help of our generous community and volunteers, to meet the very specific needs of those in need this holiday season. Adopt-A-Family program matches community sponsors to families in need of help. Interfaith provides a list of gift ideas for the sponsored family members. Holiday Toy Drive offers the community an opportunity to collect toys for children of all ages. Families requesting assistance are able to choose gifts for their children from a variety of donated toys. Gifts for Seniors program provides hand-delivered holiday gifts to senior adults, ages 62 and older, in need of holiday cheer. Interfaith invites all community members to hold food drives and collect non-perishable items to fill our pantry shelves. This is especially a great time to collect holiday food items. Click here to see our Holiday Food Pantry needs. In addition, Interfaith will be accepting Walmart gift cards in $25 increments and grocery gift cards in $20 increments to distribute to our families and seniors for holiday assistance. If your business or organization would like to hold a food, toy or gift card drive, Interfaith can provide you with a list of suggestions. “Each year, thousands of children and Seniors receive food, gifts and holiday cheer through Interfaith, donated by our amazing community,” said Missy Herndon, President and CEO, Interfaith of The Woodlands. “Our goal is the bring people together in the name of service. We believe everyone deserves to celebrate the holidays, feel loved and cared for. Our programs and wonderful donors make that mission possible.” For details on all Interfaith Holiday GIVING programs, including how to get involved, important dates and contacts, or for assistance, please visit woodlandsinterfaith.org/holidaygiving or call 281-367-1230. Interfaith of The Woodlands is a nonprofit social service agency providing programs and services to meet the needs of The Woodlands and surrounding area. Interfaith provides basic needs assistance and special programs to families experiencing financial crisis, and supportive service through care and wellness programs to senior adults, in addition to many community programs dedicated to improving the lives of individuals in need. For more information on Interfaith’s programs and services, or to become a volunteer, please visit woodlandsinterfaith.org or call 281-367-1230.

INTERFAITH ANNOUNCES APPOINTMENT TO SENIOR LEADERSHIP TEAM

The Woodlands, TX (Thursday, September 16, 2021) —Interfaith of The Woodlands is pleased to announce the appointment of Jennifer Huffine, as Co-Director of Programs and Services. Huffine has over 10 years of nonprofit experience and 25 years of management and project management experience. She will join current Director of Programs and Services, Holly Mayer, and is a welcomed addition to the Senior Leadership team who leads Interfaith as it moves into its 48th year of serving South Montgomery County. “Jennifer’s extensive knowledge and hands-on approach to program development and execution, as well as her personal desire to meet the ever-growing and changing needs of our community, makes her an incredible fit to co-lead our efforts to provide every neighbor with essential, basic needs so they can live self-sufficiently,” shared Missy Herndon, Interfaith of The Woodlands President & CEO. Prior to joining Interfaith, Huffine was the Director of Operations and Programs at Community Assistance Center and Marketing Manager at Montgomery County United Way. She is a 2015 graduate of Leadership Montgomery County and served on the Montgomery County Food Bank Impact Council and Texas A&M Agrilife Extension Leadership Advisory Board. She is married to Michael Huffine and they have 5 children. “I am very excited to be joining such a dynamic team of leaders here at Interfaith. The impact that this team makes within our community is incredible and I am honored to be a small part of that work,” said Jennifer Huffine, Interfaith of The Woodlands Director of Programs and Services. Her many years of experience give her the ideal perspective to take on the role of Co-Director of Programs and Services at Interfaith of The Woodlands that will further our mission of bringing people together to build and more loving and caring community through service. About Interfaith of The Woodlands: Interfaith of The Woodlands is a non-profit social service agency providing numerous programs and services to meet the needs of The Woodlands and surrounding area. For more information on Interfaith’s programs and services, or to become a volunteer, please visit: woodlandsinterfaith.org or call 281-367-1230.

GIVING GOES GLAM DONATES OVER 200 MEALS TO LOCAL HOSPITALS

The Woodlands, TX (August 30, 2021) The Giving Goes Glam virtual event benefiting Interfaith of The Woodlands and Junior League of The Woodlands was held on Friday, August 27th. Sponsors and guests attended watch parties to view this year’s Giving Goes Glam with special remarks from Master of Ceremonies, Ian Ramirez, Co-chairs – Erin Doré and Brianna Masterson, President and CEO of Interfaith of The Woodlands, Missy Herndon and 2020-2021 President of Junior League of The Woodlands, Jennifer Sheehan. Presenting Sponsor St. Luke’s Health and Exclusive Automotive Sponsor, SEWELL Automotive Companies, were joined by dozens of other generous businesses and individuals who made this event possible. Many sponsors and guests chose to graciously donate over 200 meals to local hospitals. Meals prepared by The Woodlands Waterway Marriott Hotel & Convention Center were delivered to Houston Methodist The Woodlands Hospital, St. Luke’s Health and Memorial Hermann The Woodlands Medical Center. Ticket holders enjoyed a New York–style runway show highlighting the latest fashion trends by Saks Fifth Avenue, styled by renowned Houston fashion event producer, Lenny Matuszewski and Senior Fashion Stylist, Tamara Klosz Bonar. Special highlights of the show were the 12 community models, each celebrated for their exemplary volunteerism and service on behalf of Interfaith and Junior League. Jennifer Bulovas, Carol Durkee, Alison Judge, Michelle Little, Chad Miller, Kathryne Pruitt, Katie Schonert, Brooke Schmitt, Mike Seder, Lonny Soza, Rikki Speck and Blake Wilcox were honored for their long-standing commitment to various philanthropic activities throughout the region. The Woodlands “hometown” social service organization, Interfaith of The Woodlands, continues its tradition of helping our neighbors in need through extensive programs, services, and projects directly developed out of community need. For more information on Interfaith’s programs and services or to become a volunteer, please visit woodlandsinterfaith.org or call 281-367-1230. Junior League of The Woodlands is an organization of women committed to promoting voluntarism, developing the potential of women and improving communities through the effective action and leadership of trained volunteers. Its purpose is exclusively educational and charitable. For information on Junior League of The Woodlands, please visit jlthewoodlands.org or call 281-376-5754.

LOCAL AGENCIES JOIN FORCES TO HELP STUDENTS IN MONTGOMERY COUNTY PREPARE FOR A SUCCESSFUL SCHOOL YEAR

THE WOODLANDS, TX – (August 3, 2021) Community Assistance Center and Interfaith of The Woodlands joined forces last Saturday for a Back to School Event at The Ark Church in Conroe, TX. Hundreds of cars lined the parking lot while families waited for school supply packs for grades Pre-K – 12th. Volunteers for The Ark Church along with staff from both nonprofits distributed 1,379 school supply packs, backpacks and snacks to children in Montgomery County. As families continue to be impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic or just struggling to make ends meet, the school supply assistance through Community Assistance Center and Interfaith of The Woodlands provided children the confidence to start the 2021-2022 school year prepared. “I am grateful to a community of caring neighbors and donors who continue to support our efforts to help families in need,” said Missy Herndon, President and CEO, Interfaith of The Woodlands. “Between their support, and the collaboration with Community Assistance Center and The Ark Church, nearly 1,400 children in our County will be able to start school, prepared for success, like their peers. I am so proud of the teams who came together to make this endeavor possible and look forward to growing the event in the coming years.” “We are so grateful for the opportunity to partner with Interfaith of The Woodlands and the Ark Church for this Back to School distribution! We are focused on strengthening our collaborative efforts throughout Montgomery County and this has been a great start to reaching our goal of bringing many more entities together next year in efforts to provide County wide event for students and their families to receive all the help and resources they need to start the school year off ready for success,” shared Jennifer Landers, Executive Director of Community Assistance Center. About Community Assistance Center: Community Assistance Center has proudly served Montgomery County since 1981. They are a non-profit 501(c)(3) social services organization that provides basic needs services and long-term case management to individuals and families throughout Montgomery County who are struggling through times of financial hardships. For more information, visit cac-mctx.org or call 936-539- 1096. About Interfaith of The Woodlands: Interfaith of The Woodlands is a non-profit social service agency providing numerous programs and services to meet the needs of The Woodlands and surrounding area. For more information on Interfaith’s programs and services, or to become a volunteer, please visit: woodlandsinterfaith.org or call 281-367-1230.

WASTE CONNECTIONS GOLF CLASSIC FOR KIDS DONATES $100,000 TO HELP FUND PROGRAMS FOR CHILDREN

THE WOODLANDS, TX – (June 9, 2021) Interfaith of The Woodlands is a grateful beneficiary of the 13th annual Waste Connections Golf Classic for Kids, receiving $100,000 to fund basic needs assistance services for children and families in South Montgomery County. The gift comes to Interfaith of The Woodlands during a time of expected high community need, as families continue to rebuild after the winter storm, recover from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and enter the summer months. “Summer is a challenge as many families with children struggle to provide daily meals, snacks and supervised care when students are not in school. This generous gift from Waste Connections will help feed food-insecure families and keep them in their homes with rent/mortgage and utility payment assistance. These funds will also support the Kits 4 Kidz School Supplies Assistance Program providing supplies and backpacks for the new school year and support Interfaith’s weekend nutrition program for students when they return to the classroom. We are deeply grateful for Waste Connections’ continued support of our goal to support families in need in our community,” shared Missy Herndon, President & CEO, Interfaith of The Woodlands. Interfaith’s Kits 4 Kidz School Supplies Assistance Program recently kicked off its community drives, collecting supplies and backpacks to prepare to support more than 2,000 students as they return to school in August. The Interfaith Food Pantry Program continues to support over 500 local families each month with groceries to make 4-6 meals, toiletries, paper goods, cleaning products, baby care items and produce from the Veggie Villages. “For the past 13 years, our vendors, employees and volunteers have united together in support of this event, raising critical funds for dozens of worthwhile organizations. We are truly grateful for their continued generosity and humbled by the positive impact on the lives of so many children and families throughout Montgomery County because of this Tournament,” shared Michelle Little, Executive Director with Waste Connections. About Waste Connections: Waste Connections is an integrated solid waste services company that provides non-hazardous waste collection, transfer and disposal services, along with resource recovery primarily through recycling and renewable fuels generation. The Company serves more than seven million residential, commercial and industrial customers in mostly exclusive and secondary markets across 43 states in the U.S. and six provinces in Canada. Waste Connections also provides non-hazardous oilfield waste treatment, recovery and disposal services in several basins across the U.S., as well as intermodal services for the movement of cargo and solid waste containers in the Pacific Northwest. For more information, visit Waste Connections at www.wasteconnections.com. About Interfaith of The Woodlands: Interfaith of The Woodlands is a non-profit social service agency providing numerous programs and services to meet the needs of The Woodlands and surrounding area. For more information on Interfaith’s programs and services, or to become a volunteer, please visit: woodlandsinterfaith.org or call 281-367-1230.

THE WOODLANDS CELEBRATION OF EXCELLENCE GALA IS SET FOR OCTOBER AND NOW ACCEPTING HOMETOWN HERO NOMINATIONS

THE WOODLANDS, TX (Thursday, April 29, 2021) – The Woodlands Celebration of Excellence Gala will be held on Saturday, October 2nd at The Woodlands Waterway Marriott Hotel and Convention Center. After a difficult year, the Gala returns to honor our Hometown Heroes and recognize the contribution by so many that has made The Woodlands the vibrant community it is today. The event was created in 1999 in conjunction with The Woodlands’ 25th Anniversary where Mr. George P. Mitchell inducted the first class of Hometown Heroes. Since that time, 139 individuals, businesses, non-profit organizations have received the honor. “The Woodlands has been blessed with dynamic visionaries who have not only contributed to its economic development, but who have also given much of their time in service to others,” remarked Missy Herndon, President and CEO of Interfaith of The Woodlands. “The past twelve months have created numerous challenges for so many; and as result, Interfaith has served a record numbers of individuals and families who are facing unemployment for the first time in their lives. Through the generosity of this community, each client has received the help they needed and the encouragement to begin a new journey. Through all of the difficulties, we have witnessed acts of kindness each and every day, making this year’s Gala a fitting tribute to our tight knit community.” Together with Interfaith’s Board of Directors, led by Chair William H. Murphy, Gala Co-Chairs DeAnn Guidry and Nicole Murphy are planning a heartfelt evening, celebrating the newest Hometown Heroes, and honoring the compassion the South Montgomery County has shown to its neighbors throughout the Coronavirus pandemic. Hometown Hero nominations are open through 5:00 pm on Monday, May 31st. The nomination form, along with The Celebration of Excellence Gala details, can be found at hometownheroesgala.org.  Nominations can be submitted online, digitally to nominations@woodlandsinterfaith.org or mailed to Hometown Hero Selection Committee, c/o Interfaith of The Woodlands, 4242 Interfaith Way, The Woodlands, TX  77381. Questions on nominations or the Gala can be directed to Carolyn Donovan, Director of Development, at development@woodlandsinterfaith.org or 832-615-8225. Interfaith of The Woodlands is a nonprofit social service agency providing numerous programs and services to meet the needs of The Woodlands and surrounding area. For more information on Interfaith’s programs and services or to become a volunteer, please visit woodlandsinterfaith.org or call 281-367-1230.

WINTER STORM RECOVERY EFFORTS

  As we look to open our doors tomorrow morning, we know that many of our neighbors are rebuilding after last week’s Arctic Blast. This is a devastating situation for anyone, but even more so for our neighbors who live paycheck to paycheck. In addition to their usual first of the month expenses, affected individuals and families are facing their insurance deductible and mounting costs to replace damaged items. With your help, Interfaith will be able to bridge the gap by offering: Financial Assistance for Rent, Mortgage or Utility Payments Food Pantry Distribution Grocery Store and Gasoline Gift Cards Vouchers to our Hand Me Up Shop for Clothing and Housewares Interfaith of The Woodlands is also working with United Way of Greater Houston, who has activated MCCARES, the Montgomery County long-term recovery group, providing additional resources to those in need. Additionally, the Interfaith team has continued their weekly wellness calls and grocery delivery for Senior Adults, ensuring they have everything they need during this time. Many in this group are still homebound, awaiting a complete COVID-19 vaccination. For nearly 50 years, Interfaith of The Woodlands has served the South Montgomery County community through times of personal crisis, natural disasters, and economic downturns, because of the generosity of local businesses and residents. Thank you for always answering our call for help, preventing your neighbors from facing food insecurity or homelessness. You can continue this legacy of service by using the link  to make a financial donation, or bringing a donation for the Food Pantry during 9:00 am and 4:00 pm, Monday through Friday. Click here for the list of Food Pantry items needed. If you, or someone you know, is struggling from the storm’s impact, please contact Interfaith at fs@woodlandsinterfaith.org or 281-367-1230. As your Hometown Non-Profit for nearly 50 years, we stand ready to serve. With much gratitude, Missy Herndon President & CEO, Interfaith of The Woodlands

INTERFAITH ANNOUNCES INCREASED NEED FOR FOOD, TOYS AND GIFT CARDS TO HELP NEIGHBORS THIS HOLIDAY SEASON

THE WOODLANDS (November 19, 2020) - Interfaith of The Woodlands, serving the human needs of South Montgomery County since 1973, has seen record increases in food distribution since the global pandemic hit our county in mid-March. Since that time, Interfaith has seen a 100% increase in all programs including food pantry programs and crisis assistance. The organization began Holiday GIVING program registrations for both families and Seniors, and anticipates serving over 7,000 individuals including children and senior adults in the coming weeks. Year-to-date, Interfaith has served 23.114 individuals, over 115,570 meals by weekly curbside distribution and provided financial assistance to 17,961 individuals. Additionally, Interfaith has delivered groceries and provided weekly wellness calls to 2,965 local Seniors. Interfaith’s annual Holiday GIVING program will include Food Assistance, Holiday Toy Drive and Gifts for Seniors to provide families, children and Seniors with gifts and food to make their Holiday season special. “The needs are great every year, but this year, we continue to see more families lacking the basic needs of food, shelter and clothing as the global pandemic continues to provide financial uncertainty for so many of our neighbors who were already struggling,” said Missy Herndon, President and CEO, Interfaith of The Woodlands. “With the continued help and support of our community, we can maintain our core value of never saying no and helping bring holiday cheer to every person who requests help this holiday season.” Interfaith Family Services provides holiday gifts to families through their Holiday Toy Drive and Distribution, a program in which the community comes together to donate new toys and gift cards for children and teens. Families requesting assistance in Interfaith’s service area will be able to choose gifts for their children from a variety of donated toys. This year, in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, gifts will be collected and distributed by appointment at the South County Community Center, December 7 – 18. This is a wonderful opportunity for families in need to ensure their children will receive gifts this holiday season. Businesses or organizations interested in holding a toy or gift card drive, contact Sarah Thomas, sthomas@woodlandsinterfaith.org, for help facilitating the collection and drop off of these items. Gifts and gift cards are due to Interfaith by 12:00 pm on Friday, December 4th. Another option this year is to shop the Interfaith Amazon Wish List, an easy way to donate: bit.ly/InterfaithHolidayToyDrive and gifts are shipped directly to Interfaith. Interfaith Senior Services provides holiday gifts for senior adults, 62 and older though the Gifts for Seniors Program. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Gifts for Seniors holiday gift cards will be mailed to ensure safety for our senior neighbors. Senior holiday parties and festivities will be mobile and drive-thru this holiday season. To provide a gift for a local senior neighbor this holiday season, please contact Holly Mayer, hmayer@woodlandsinterfaith.org and a list of suggested gift ideas will be provided. Gifts are due to Interfaith by 12:00 pm Tuesday, December 1st.
Each family receiving Holiday assistance is also given food pantry staples and holiday foods to prepare a traditional Holiday Meal with Food Pantry Assistance. Organize a food drive and collect non-perishable items to fill Interfaith’s pantry shelves. This is a wonderful time to collect holiday food items. Please contact Ana Hardy, ahardy@woodlandsinterfaith.org for assistance with setting up a holiday food drive. About Interfaith of The Woodlands: Interfaith of The Woodlands is a non-profit social service agency providing numerous programs and services to meet the needs of The Woodlands and surrounding area. For more information on Interfaith’s programs and services, or to become a volunteer, please visit: https://woodlandsinterfaith.org or call 281- 367-1230. About Interfaith Holiday GIVING: To submit a request for assistance, email: holiday@woodlandsinterfaith.org. Please include the following in your email: Your name, current address and phone number. Visit https://woodlandsinterfaith.org/holidaygiving/ to learn more about Interfaith Holiday GIVING and if you would like to donate to support these Holiday GIVING Programs, please visit: bit.ly/InterfaithHoliday    

INTERFAITH OF THE WOODLANDS PRESENTS 2020 COMMUNITY HERO AWARDS TO LOCAL HOSPITALS IN SOUTH MONTGOMERY COUNTY

THE WOODLANDS, TX (November 16, 2020) – As our county continues the ongoing battle against the global pandemic of Coronavirus, Interfaith of The Woodlands shifted its annual Hometown Hero Awards to focus on our local Community Heroes for 2020, honoring healthcare workers and administration from Houston Methodist The Woodlands Hospital, Memorial Hermann The Woodlands Medical Center, St. Luke’s Health, Texas Children’s Hospital The Woodlands and The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center The Woodlands for their bravery, sacrifice and service to keeping our community healthy and safe. The 2020 Community Hero Awards were presented by Josh Urban, Interfaith of The Woodlands Board Chair, Congressman Kevin Brady and Missy Herndon, Interfaith President and CEO. Congressman Kevin Brady shared with each hospital his gratitude for everything they do each day to care for our community by selflessly giving to others, caring for the sick, welcoming new life into the world and supporting families during difficult times. Brady said he was proud of their efforts in responding to COVID-19 and as a token of his appreciation, each organization’s leadership was presented an official U.S. House of Representatives Commendation and a Community Hero Medallion. It was a unanimous decision by the Hometown Hero selection committee this year to honor area hospitals instead of individuals, businesses and organizations. This annual tradition of honoring Hometown Heroes began in 1999 as part of The Woodlands 25th Anniversary Celebration and has continued ever since. Typically, Hometown Heroes are honored at The Woodlands Celebration of Excellence, but the event was canceled due to the widespread pandemic. “How beautiful it is that nearly 50 years ago while planning out what was to become The Woodlands, Mr. George Mitchell knew that above all else, this community would need to be built with heart. Together with Founding Executive Director, Rev. Don Gebert, they created Interfaith of The Woodlands to serve the human needs of those who called this new neighborhood home,” shared Missy Herndon, President & CEO of Interfaith of The Woodlands, “Today, in the midst of many challenges, the South Montgomery County area has pulled together to take care of those in need like never before. All of these hospitals are a beautiful example of the heart of our community and we are forever thankful to every single healthcare worker in our community who shows up in the name of service and caring.”
Interfaith of The Woodlands is grateful for the healthcare workers that continue to exhibit bravery and strength while serving on the frontlines of this health crisis, keeping patients safe and comfortable in their care. Congratulations to the 2020 Community Heroes! About Interfaith of The Woodlands: Interfaith of The Woodlands is a non-profit social service agency providing numerous programs and services to meet the needs of The Woodlands and surrounding area. For more information on Interfaith’s programs and services, or to become a volunteer, please visit: https://woodlandsinterfaith.org or call 281-367-1230.    
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