OARS Board Members
We have made it our mission to help those women who have served in the military and now struggle to acquire services they need from government agencies. We understand how to navigate the tenuous road from military service to civilian life — to find the resources, learn the rules and be “trained” as civilians.
Let us help you move forward into this next phase of your life. We are committed to making a difference for women veterans.Our 2014-2016 Board is comprised of women (and men) who served at various times, some in combat theater or combat zones and civilians committed to our women service members. Our injuries range from post traumatic stress disorder, traumatic brain injury, other traumas, broken bones, and combat related injuries to having no injuries while serving. Our Board members cover the periods from the Women’s Army Corps, Vietnam, Post Vietnam, Peacetime, Desert Storm, and the wars of Iraq and Afghanistan. We also have a non-veteran member and recently elected our first male board member. We strive to provide our organization, its members, and our women veterans with qualified, dedicated, committed, people.
Julia Sheriden, President, Current 2012-
Served in the United States Marine Corps during the Cold War and the Iranian Hostage Crisis. She was the first women trained as a “combat-ready field cook” and as a Military Affiliated Radio Systems (MARS) Radio Operator in the Third Marine Air Wing (3MAW). Ms. Sheriden completed her tour of duty attaining Sergeant of Marines in thirty months.
After service, she received her Bachelors degree in photo Journalism. She worked for the federal government, retiring from the National Park Service, Yellowstone. She has received numerous awards for writing, volunteerism, and most notable was the 2013 Jefferson Awards. In 2014, she received the Boeing Employees Credit Union’s “BECU People Helping People Member Volunteer of the Year Award” where OARS received a cash award recognizing her volunteerism.
Wendy Hutchins, Vice-President, (Secretary, 2013) Current 2014-
Served in the United States Air Force over twenty two years, still serving in the Air Force Reserves. She has served in several overseas deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan. She also is a Conductor for the Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad (BNSF) for the past seventeen years, where she encourages the hiring of other veterans, especially women veterans. She has worked tirelessly improving our membership and run the auction for the past two years. She is a two time recipient of the coveted OARS “OAR for Excellent Service”Award.
Eugenia M. “Begi” Tarver, Director, Current 2014-
Served in the United States Marine Corps during the Cold War, the Iranian Hostage, Libya, and Beirut periods. She served as an Air Traffic Controller at USMCAS El Toro, CA and in Japan. After leaving the Marines, she continued and eventually retired as an air traffic controller in Texas, where she resides with her family.
Emmalee Ashland, Treasurer, Current 2012-
Being our first and only non-military board member, she is the daughter of a Navy veteran. She works as the Information Technology Specialist for a local domestic violence agency, where she’s worked over twenty-three years. Born and raised in Seattle, WA, she enjoy gardening, reading, and sings in the Phinney Neighborhood Chorus (PNCC). She has a background in bookkeeping with an Associate’s Degree in Business.
Debra Wood, Director, Current 2014-
Served as a nurse in the United States Army during Vietnam stateside at Madigan Army Hospital and has served veterans for over twenty-five years. She is currently the President of the Washington Council of the Vietnam Veterans of America, Chapter 102 (www.vva.org). She is also on the administrative staff of King County. She enjoys her Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, oh what the heck, every-day-of-the-week football. Go Seahawks and Go Kansas! Go Mariners, too! She is also the 2015 recipient of the Washington Department of Veterans Affairs (www.WDVA.wa.gov) “Woman Veteran of the Year” Award. Congratulations, Debra!! We are all proud of you.
John H. Varga, Director, Current 2015-
John served eight years in the US Army Reserve. During that time he deployed to Afghanistan and also completed the year-long Thai Language Course at the Defense Language Institute in Monterey, CA. He is a graduate of the University of Washington and Seattle University School of Law. As an attorney, John regularly volunteers throughout the year at local legal clinics to draft wills. He also co-created a website for Washington residents to learn about will-drafting: wa-wills.com.
Board of Director, Position Vacant
OARS Board 2016 Openings and Elections 2018
There are open positions on OARS’ Board of Directors. These are coveted, requiring a two year commitment and must be approved in advance. Elections are held during every even year during the third quarter. Board Members serve for a two year term, working together as a team to promote the mission of assisting women with having a smoother transition into civilian life, whenever they need it. This is a working, all volunteer board.
PAST BOARD MEMBERS
We truly appreciated all they did to help move our organization forward and will miss them. Their services are/were invaluable. Thank you to each of you. We hope you’ll continue to volunteer for OARS for Women Veterans. Our organization would not be where we are today without their help and the help of our dedicated volunteers. Thank you again, so much.
Tracy Feagiai-McNeal, Director, Social Media (2012-2014) (2015-16)
Janis Clark, Vice President (2012-2014)
Beth Shepard, Director (2014 -2015)
Jan “Rane” Fox, Director, Webmaster (2012-2014)
Christina Gillies, Vice President (2012-2014)
Lizzie Evans, Secretary (2012-2013)