NW Natural Employee Stories

We help build vibrant communities thanks to our employees and the difference they make in our communities.

 

Marilyn Webber: Walking Her Talk

For the last 11 years, Marilyn Webber’s calendar has been booked on Thursday nights. With few exceptions, she leaves work at NW Natural, drives to the Oregon Humane Society (OHS), and spends several hours walking shelter dogs, rain or shine. But her commitment involves more than just picking up a leash and walking.

Several years ago, Marilyn – who manages Office Services – began training with the OHS behavioral specialist to learn how to help socialize abused and neglected dogs. As a “heart pin” dog walker, she now works with pups that have some of the most challenging behaviors.

“We’ve had some really tough cases,” Marilyn said, recalling animals OHS has rescued. “I’ve always had a huge soft spot in my heart for innocent victims of bad situations. And I’m always touched by their capacity for unconditional love.”

Marilyn Webber, NW Natural’s Volunteer of the Year, walks dogs like 11-month-old Anton at Oregon Humane Society every week.

Marilyn Webber, NW Natural’s Volunteer of the Year, walks dogs like 11-month-old Anton at Oregon Humane Society every week.

Marilyn has fostered and adopted rescue animals, including her cat Lily. And her training with fearful dogs has taught her how to be patient above all. “It’s all about letting the dog come to you and earning their trust – and giving them boundaries and positive reinforcement.”

To be able to do even more for animals most in need, Marilyn recently earned an Emergency Animal Services certification. With it, she’s now qualified to be deployed to emergency situations – such as hoarding cases, puppy mills and natural disasters – along with other trained OHS volunteers.

Marilyn’s commitment to OHS is just one of the reasons NW Natural honored her with the 2017 Volunteer of the Year award. She has a long history of helping others, including serving on the board of Central City Concern for 17 years. Letty Owings Center – a Central City service that provides a safe place for addicted mothers and pregnant women to recover – named its nursery after Marilyn as a testament to her dedication.

Want to do your part for people and animals in need? Learn how to help people transition out of homelessness at tprojects.org. And visit oregonhumane.org to learn about volunteering, donating or adopting.

» Kim Coon: Golden Opportunity