CWU News

CWU Center for Leadership and Community Engagement honored

Joanne Perez, CWU CLCE assistant director with Kim Jellison, CLCE program director The Ellensburg Downtown Association (EDA) presented its 2018 Town and Gown Award to the CWU Center for Leadership and Community Engagement (CLCE).

Molly Jones, the EDA executive director, explained that the award “is given to those who contribute strong and collaborative partnerships between CWU and the community of Ellensburg.” CWU received the award specifically in light of CLCE’s longstanding community cooperation and service efforts.

The CLCE’s goal is to empower “ordinary people making an extraordinary difference.” It is based on helping university students learn the character and ethics of leadership, servant leadership, and honing their leadership skills.

Kim Jellison, CLCE program manager, accepted the award on behalf of the university Thursday night (June 28), during the annual EDA Appreciation Celebration and Fundraiser, held at the Elks Building Grand Ballroom in downtown Ellensburg.

Jellison said, “As a direct result of our partnership with EDA approximately 200 CWU student volunteers have logged more than 850 service hours. We maintain a very strong partnership with the EDA and have collaborated on many events over the years. I can’t wait to see what the future holds!”

Jellison spearheads the community engagement side of CLCE, such as the volunteer program and coordinating with campus, city, county, schools, and state partners, including on a wide range of service projects, such as “Kittitas Connect.” That involves a series of events designed to engage CWU students with the community in positive ways, such as various tasks throughout downtown Ellensburg along with the annual Yakima River Clean Up.

The 45th annual clean up took place this past April. It is held each year in honor of Earth Month.

“It was our largest we have had to date!” Jellison noted of this year’s event. “We went to 10 locations though out the Yakima River Canyon and surrounding Ellensburg area and had 380 volunteers that served 1367 hours.”

Other CLCE programs that directly involve the EDA including the Downtown Make a Difference Day, held in October, held in connection with a national day of service as part of Kittitas Connect program; and the Downtown Cleanup, which also takes place in April.

“On Make a Difference Day we prepare 65 planters, located throughout the downtown, for winter,” Jellison added. “For the downtown cleanup, we do a variety of tasks, such as weeding flower beds and sweeping alleys.”

Said Andre Dickerson, CLCE director. “We’re all so proud of the work Kim does, in conjunction with our students, and appreciate how well they represent CLCE and CWU as a whole. This recognition is well deserved for her and them, and we’re so grateful to receive this prestigious honor from the Ellensburg Downtown Association.”

June 29, 2018

(L to r.):Joanne Perez, CWU CLCE assistant director with Kim Jellison, CLCE program director

Media contact: Robert Lowery, director of Radio Services and Integrated Communications, 509-963-1487,