Clara BARKton recently started popping up on our Northwest Region social media accounts. Why? Because we love the spirit shown by both Clara and her human-mom Kay Wallis, and wanted to share their story with you.
Kay is a Donor Communications and Stewardship Specialist working primarily out of our King County office, but contributes to development efforts throughout the Northwest Region. She joined the team early in 2018.
This is Kay’s second position with the Red Cross. She first joined as an AmeriCorps Service member, moving from Wisconsin to California to serve as a Volunteer & Youth Services Coordinator. That’s where she was the day floodwaters left a soggy little puppy on the chapter’s front door. The two have been inseparable ever since.
Still, we wanted to know more about our new, furry mascot, so we asked Kay to answer a few questions on Miss BARKton’s behalf:
Question: The name “Clara BARKton” is a nod to the founder of the American Red Cross, Clara Barton, right? Who gave it to you and why?
Answer: Yes! My mom, Kay Wallis, gave it to me. When we met, she was serving an AmeriCorps term with the American Red Cross of Silicon Valley in San Jose, CA. I quickly became the unofficial mascot of the Silicon Valley office and the name seemed only fitting to my mom.
Q: Clara Barton was a visionary in her time. How do you help keep her vision alive today?
A: I think Clara truly believed there was a silver lining to every bad story. Although my past is sad, my future is brighter than ever.
Q: Which of the Red Cross founding principles resonates with you most and why? (Humanity, Impartiality, Neutrality, Independence, Voluntary Service, Unity & Universality)
A: Impartiality! I offer-up licks and tail wags to all who want them.
Q: As an unofficial mascot for the American Red Cross, what is one message you’d like to share with the people of the Northwest Region?
A: After my home was flooded and I lost my litter of puppies, I was abandoned at my local Red Cross office. Even in the darkest days of my life, there was hope. The Red Cross is there for people every day to offer hope in their darkest days.
WHO IS CLARA BARKton?
- Breed: Dachshund/Beagle
- Age: 3 (March 2nd bday/adoptiversary)
- Hometown: San Jose, CA
- Current city: Seattle, WA
- Favorite snack: Mixed Berries Nutro Crunchy Treats
- Favorite toy: Elephant squeaker
- Favorite walk: Steward Park in Seattle, WA