Lindsey Rice was named Leader’s Choice at the 2018 Rogue Valley Youth for Christ Emerging Leaders ceremony Tuesday in downtown Medford.
The para-church organization honored 13 community members during a program at The Inn at the Commons. Ten leaders younger than 40 and three students were feted for their excellence in philanthropy and leadership performance. They were chosen based on their commitment to making the region a better and safer place to live, as well as their strong work ethic, professional maturity and high personal standards.
Rice is the owner of Rogue Valley ZipLine Adventure and is co-chair of the Travel Medford Tourism Council. Her business has earned a No. 1 attraction rating on TripAdvisor and earned four Certificate of Excellence awards since launching in 2011.
Rounding out the top Emerging Leaders were: Aly Hollewijn, Dave De Rurange, Jeremy Terwilliger, Kelly Harrington, Larkin Hastings, Meghann Erickson, Seth Benham, Robb Mayers and Polina Leiser. Student Leaders honored were: Matthew Mendenhall, Sage Ashley and Landon Moir.
They were chosen from 70 nominees.
Each of the leaders engaged in The Emerging Leader Philanthropic Challenge to raise support to build a transitional house for homeless youth. During a six-week period, the leaders raised approximately $43,000.
The 2017 Leader’s Choice winner was Brant Boersma, oldest son of the late Dutch Bros co-founder Dane Boersma. He shared his thoughts Tuesday on philanthropy.
“When you give, it’s contagious,” Boersma said. “When you give, you don’t necessarily see the fruit from it right away. Sometimes you have to let the dirt do the work, and soak it in, and fertilize it. We want to be the ones that take control ... and make it happen now. But usually what happens is that chaos has to happen first. Chaos is pain, it’s breaking, it’s movement, it’s change. You go on with your life, and it can be really easy not to give any more. But the blessing is when you get to see the fruit, and the truth isn’t always getting to see the fruit, which is a bummer. But the secret isn’t about seeing the fruit. The secret is getting to get rid of it, to let it go.”
U.S. Rep. Greg Walden, R-Ore., told the honorees they have elevated the community.
He said it was heartening “to see the emerging leaders in the nonprofit and for-profit world, and those just launching their education and looking for the next opportunity to serve.
“It’s people like these who don’t get enough recognition, but it’s people like these who are the underpinning of our community’s fabric,” Walden said.
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