March 4

Maple Leaf council seeks four new members



Two of Maple Leaf’s most visible residents are stepping down after years on the Maple Leaf Community Council – an organization that played a major role in shaping our neighborhood.

The ubiquitous Donna Hartmann-Miller (seen rousing the 12th Man) is stepping down from her council position when her term expires next month. (She’s also ubiquitous here.)

Her husband, David Miller – who has served as council president for nearly six years – will step down from the president’s position in May, but remain on the council until his term expires in 2016.

With the additional departure of Lori Phipps, council secretary, Miller writes:

“With the two existing open seats (Positions 8 and 9) and the departure of Donna and Lori from the Board (Positions 1 and 3), our nine-person Board will be down to just five members. I have been writing with ever-greater urgency in our quarterly newsletters about the need for other Maple Leaf residents to come forward and join the Executive Board – and now that need is even larger.”

Miller’s remark came in an email to the neighborhood last week. In it he also says:

I feel I must make crystal clear these three changes all result from personal reasons. There is no issue dividing the Board, our Board members get along really well, and Maple Leaf is not facing any major crisis (knock wood).

New volunteers need not worry about stepping into a toxic or frantic situation. Furthermore, all three of us will remain involved to pass along knowledge, expertise, and our spirit of neighborhood service – we won’t leave Maple Leaf, new volunteers, or our existing Board members hanging.

The Maple Leaf Community Council was formed by active neighbors in 1983. “We need to remember that the community we live in did not just happen,” Jack Remick, a former council member, wrote in an obituary for one of the founders.

Barbara Maxwell, another former council member, wrote:

“I completely agree with Jack that the Maple Leaf of today did not just happen but instead reflects hundreds of volunteer hours dedicated on behalf of the Maple Leaf neighborhood.”

That 2011 obituary, for Puni Hokea, is here. It also quotes HistoryLink:

Maple Leaf did not become active until 1983 when, under the leadership of Puni Hokea and Peter Orser, they formed the Maple Leaf Community Council.

Quietly, persistently, the group worked to improve services, yet preserve their sense of community. Without confrontation and without blocking a single building permit, the group managed to scale back the zoning of Roosevelt Way NE so that businesses had to provide off-street parking. The group was “articulate and well organized” (The Weekly).

To serve on the council (technically its Executive Board) you must be a resident of Maple Leaf. Other formal requirements are in the council’s bylaws. If interested, send an email to

Miller adds:

The top informal requirement is you must love Maple Leaf. A close second is you have to be willing to represent the neighborhood, not just your personal views, during Executive Board discussions and votes. You need to be good at reading and responding to email, have interest in neighborhood issues, and be able to spend an average of a couple hours a week (sometimes more, sometimes less) to devote to serving Maple Leaf.

About the author 

Sara W

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  1. A well earned break by 2 all stars. I hope Maple Leaflets know how lucky they have been to have had Donna and Dave volunteering for so long on their behalf for so many years.

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