The Foundation Board

“I think the health of our civilization, the depth of our awareness about the underpinnings of our culture, and our concern for the future, can all be tested by how well we support our libraries.”

Carl Sagan
American Astronomer, Astrophysicist, Cosmologist, Author and Science Communicator

Foundation Board Members

Carol Ann Belanger
Carol Ann’s career started in Human Resources at Massachusetts General Hospital in 1973. In 1976, she relocated to San Francisco where she fell into the role of Expatriate Management Support with Crocker Bank. The sale of the bank necessitated a change and she was then hired in 1987 by Levi Strauss in San Francisco to manage their Oversea Compensation, Relocation and Benefits Program and spent time managing that program from their Northampton England Facility. After five years, Carol Ann joined a former Crocker colleague who had established a Compensation and Benefits Consulting Firm and then subsequently recruited by the West Coast office of Coopers & Lybrand to become part of a newly-established consulting team for a client’s expatriate program support. Within days of joining, in 1997, C&L merged with Price Waterhouse and the support team expanded to accommodate both organizations practices. Expansion never met the magnitude expected and in late 1999 Carol Ann was recruited to join Deloitte & Touche’s London practice for expatriate support and then hired in 2002 by a client to manage their outsourced client support center at Exult in Glasgow, Scotland. Another redundancy after a year led to her repatriation and some independent consulting in San Francisco in 2003. Carol Ann continued this route until May 2007 when she was recruited to manage the expatriate programs by FM Global in Rhode Island where she remained until retirement in late 2009… which started with one year each in Tuscany and France and her eventual 2012 reestablishment of US roots in Port Townsend.

Jean Baldwin
Board Secretary
Jean has had leadership roles in public health for 40 years. Working in settings as varied as international refugee camps, urban high school health clinics, to rural Jefferson County, Washington. She retired as Director of Jefferson County Public Health (JCPH) in 2016. As Director, she expanded services by listening to people, using long-range planning methods, and reviewing current need and resources, always trying to improve the community’s health. She made structural changes at JCPH, including starting the Water Quality Division for shellfish protection, opening family planning clinics, starting the innovative Nurse-Family Partnership to improve lives of families and babies, and community partnership initiatives striving to improve health outcomes for Jefferson County residents. Jean has a BA from Creighton University, a BSN from the University of Portland, MSN from Gonzaga University, and is a licensed nurse practitioner (ARNP). Jean, husband Jim, and two small children first sailed to Port Townsend. This place drew them for a number of reasons; one was the resource and magic the library offered their son and daughter–the chess games after school and reading times, so much made it seem this was the right place to work and grow kids.

Mike Burk
Marketing Committee & Web Wrangler

Mike was born and raised in Southern California. After a year in basic training for the Army Reserve, Mike enrolled in the University of Southern California’s (USC) Small Business Entrepreneurship program in 1972. He hoped to obtain training and experience to run his family’s commercial travel agency and retail tire businesses. A few years after graduating, Mike’s focus turned to more creative and technical concerns as the family businesses were successfully transitioned to new owners. His next career steps included pursuing a Masters of Business Administration in Management; studying video production, marketing, and advertising. Mike ended the employment part of life as an executive team member of a commercial printing concern in Los Angeles, responsible for employee and customer engagement as the printing and publishing industry transitioned to digital resources. In addition, Mike was on the faculty of Chapman University in Orange, California, working with students in the Business Communication and Communication Arts Departments. Mike is on the Board of Directors of Cornerstone Pastor’s Network, a Christian organization providing resources for small churches in the US. He is a certified International Sports Medicine Association Master Athletic Trainer, a licensed Category 3 bicycle racer, a certified AKC amateur dog handler and a Myers-Briggs I.N.F.J. His favorite libraries include the Library of Congress of the United States; the Huntington Library in San Marino, California; and the library in the Hoose Hall of Philosophy at USC.

John L. Mericle
John has practiced law for over 36 years, and in 1981 he and Malcolm Harris founded the firm of Harris, Mericle & Wakayama, which has offices in both Port Townsend and Seattle. He is a graduate of the University of Texas at Austin (BA in Government 1972; Juris Doctorate 1974).

He practices primarily in the field of securities regulation. He is an active member of the American Bar Association’s State Regulation of Securities Committee (1981-present); has served as the Chair of the Washington State Securities Division Advisory Committee, as Special District Counsel to the Washington State Bar Association Disciplinary Board (1990-present), as a member of the Washington State Bar Association’s Securities Law Committee, Section of Corporation, Business and Banking Law (1993 to present). From 1992 to 2008 he taught Securities Regulation as an Adjunct Professor at the Seattle University School of Law. His wife Barbara is a microbiologist recently retired from the University of Washington.

Richard Wojt
Richard grew up in Bellingham, Washington. In 1961 he received bachelor’s degrees in chemistry and education from WSU and moved to Port Townsend that fall to teach science at Fort Worden for three years. He then spent a year teaching in Nooksack, Washington, and during the following year studied at Atlanta University on a National Science Foundation scholarship. Afterward, he accepted a job at Chimacum High School, teaching general science, chemistry, and physics, and eventually logged 24 years at Chimacum. During this time he served as a negotiator for the Chimacum teachers union, founded a hiking club, and led many extended hikes and climbs with Chimacum students.

Richard has been active in the political life of Jefferson County and Port Townsend for the last 32 years. In 1990 he was elected to the Jefferson County Commission and served three terms, representing the Third District. As County Commissioner, his duties included serving on many boards, such as the health board, United Good Neighbors, Olympic Area.

George Marie
George Marie was raised by her mother and her grandparents in the Pacific Northwest and moved to Port Townsend in 2014. A Ford Scholar and award-winning writer, she graduated from Marylhurst University in 2012 with dual degrees in Literature and Philosophy. Her thesis evolved into her first book, Dismember, published in the same year. 

Inspired by their long history of helping artists, musicians and writers hone their craft, George began working for Centrum Foundation in 2017. She currently works as a Donor Relations and Database Manager. She also serves as Co-Vice President of Programs for the American Association of University Women, and she volunteers for Northwind Arts Center and the Port Townsend Wearable Art show. 

Her spouse is the Executive Director of Northwind Arts Center. They live in an old Victorian house with their three children.

Emeritus Advisory Committee

Susan Hargleroad
Richard “Dick” Rogers
Paulette (Polly) Lyle
Stan Goddard
Bonnie Hanson-Buckley


Paulette (Polly) Lyle
Polly comes from a Utah family but grew up all over the United States (including Ephrata, Washington) because her father worked for the U.S. Air Force. Polly put herself through college by working as a cardiology special procedures assistant and is a graduate of the University of New Mexico with a chemistry major and mathematics minor. Her career took her to the Philadelphia suburbs where she proudly worked for a major pharmaceutical company as a research chemist, then as a clinical research administrator, and, finally, as a medical writer. After visiting her father in Port Angeles and Sequim over the years, she realized that Port Townsend provided wonderful opportunities for active and caring community life, outdoor activities, and proximity to her West Coast family. She’s thrilled to support education in East Jefferson County through the Port Townsend branch of AAUW, for which she has served as Co-President, Branch and Kitchen Tour Publicity Director, Career Day Co-Chair, 3rd-grade mathematics tutor, and kindergarten literacy tutor. She is also a member of the board of directors at Northwind Arts Center and is a volunteer for the Port Townsend Food Bank. Polly believes that Port Townsend’s Carnegie Library is the heart of this special city, and fully supports its programs for the benefit of the entire spectrum of our community.