Goodrich named Adams County Red Cross director

Published 12:00 am Saturday, January 31, 2004

NATCHEZ &045;&045; New health and welfare classes, bolder fund-raising and public education campaigns and possibly a new emergency response vehicle.

Those just some of the things the new director of Adams County’s Red Cross chapter wants to start now that he’s officially in that post.

&uot;We also want work on getting support … and participation from the whole community,&uot; said new Executive Director John Goodrich.

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Chapter board Chairwoman Ann Thornhill announced Wednesday Goodrich, the chapter’s interim director since March, had been approved as director.

Goodrich was chosen as director &uot;not necessarily just because of his Red Cross experience but just his experience in dealing with people and his leadership ability and organizational skills,&uot; Thornhill said.

Goodrich was one of two candidates interviewed by the board earlier this month for the director’s job.

Although the board recommended Goodrich for the position, the Red Cross’ national and regional offices also had to approve the appointment before an announcement could be made.

Now that he’s official, Goodrich is already brainstorming ways to expand the chapter’s services.

For example, he wants the chapter, as soon as this spring, to start offering a &uot;wilderness first aid&uot; class. Such classes teach people to stabilize accident victims when emergency medical personnel could be hours away.

Since hunting and three- and four-wheeler riding are such popular pastimes, &uot;that’s especially important in this area,&uot; Goodrich said, adding that those classes could begin as soon as this spring.

In addition to such traditional classes as CPR training, Goodrich is also planning to start new classes in such subjects as pet first aid, using materials written by the Red Cross and the Humane Society of the United States.

Goodrich, his wife Sharon and other volunteers are also brainstorming ideas for new fundraisers, such as a country-and-western dance or a combination movie showing and wine and cheese tasting event.

A World War II-era USO show-type benefit is also planned for November.

In addition to better serving the public, the chapter needs to expand its fundraising drives and service delivery to help it meet the American Red Cross’ stringent guidelines.

That’s especially important since the chapter will undergo its next national review in about a year and a half.

Goodrich also wants to use the media, including newspapers and radio, to get the word out about the services the Red Cross provides, from education to disaster services.

&uot;We’re looking for ways to continually let the public know we’re here and what we’re doing,&uot; Goodrich said.

The chapter is also sending out a call for volunteers. Volunteers are needed to do everything from help deliver disaster relief services to enter service delivery data into the Red Cross computer database to help rehab the emergency response vehicle Goodrich hopes to get soon.

For more information on how you can help or on what services are available, call the chapter at 442-3656.