News Around the Valley: Toy drives, Christmas trees, hospital CEO, North Bend human services

New hospital CEO named

Snoqualmie Valley Hospital has named Renee Jensen as its CEO.

Jensen has more than two decades of experience in health care leadership in Washington state. She most recently served as the senior vice president and CEO with EvergreenHealth. Before that, she headed the Summit Pacific Medical Center for a decade.

She has leadership experience navigating a financial turnaround, building a new hospital and medical clinic, and implementing framework for a community-focused wellness center, according to an announcement from the hospital.

“I am honored to be able to serve the growing communities within Snoqualmie Valley in this capacity,” Jensen said in a press release.

Snoqualmie Valley Hospital is a 25-bed public hospital district located at the intersection of I-90 and Hwy 18.

Eastside Fire toy and food drive

The Eastside Fire & Rescue’s Eastside Firefighters Benevolent Fund is still holding its annual food and toy drive. Donations will be forwarded to the Snoqualmie Valley Food Bank and Issaquah Food Bank and HopeLink. Cash donations can be made one the Eastside Firefighters Benevolent Fund website.

Snoqualmie virtual tree lighting

Snoqualmie held a virtual tree lighting ceremony this year with Santa and Mayor Matt Larson. The tree can now be visited and is located at the Railroad Park in downtown Snoqualmie, across from the Snoqualmie Depot.

The video can also be viewed on the city’s YouTube page.

The city also released a list of activity ideas for the holidays. They include a movie marathon, riding the Yuletide Express, donating to a charity, baking goods and checking out Snoqualmie winter lights displays.

DirtFish toy drive

DirtFish Rally School is holding a toy drive for the Forgotten Children’s Fund. Unwrapped donations can be left at DirtFish, at 7001 396th Drive SE, on the front steps before Dec. 25. Top needs for children ages 6-12 include sports balls, puzzles, blankets, jackets and legos.

North Bend increases human services funding by one-third for 2021

On Dec. 1, the North Bend City Council voted to approve the new biennial budget, which included $128,500 for human services funding next year.

The city does not have a dedicated human services department due to its size, but earmarks roughly 1% of its general fund to Snoqualmie Valley nonprofits and organizations that provide services.

For 2021, the city increased the amount it will be providing for human services by 33%.

Organizations that will receive funding include Boxley Music Find, Eastside Baby Corner, Encompass, Friends of the Trail, Friends of Youth, Mt. Si Senior Center, Snoqualmie Valley Community Network, Snoqualmie Valley Food Bank, Snoqualmie Valley Shelter Services and Trail Youth.