2011 Valued Volunteer

Bill & Elsie Montgomery

Bill & Elsie Montgomery

An organization or association is only as good as the volunteers it is able to attract! If that’s true, then the Williams Lake Stampede Association is in fine shape because of people like Bill & Elsie Montgomery.

We depend totally upon volunteers – without them, there wouldn’t be a rodeo; there are no paid-positions in the WLSA.

Elsie worked for Weldwood for close to 30 years before quitting in 1994. In 1996, with free time to spare – she began volunteering in the WL Stampede Rodeo office; a position Elsie says she chose because she enjoys rodeo and loves people!

That’s easy to see and although you may not know her by name – many of you will recognize her as the friendly, helpful lady who sells you rodeo tickets and happily answers any questions that you might have. Elsie works (with Bev Williamson) in the office (mid-May to July 1st weekend) three or four days per week, as much as 8 hours a day (14 years) – something she is happy to do she says with a laugh, “as long as it doesn’t interfere with my golf.”

So you won’t see Elsie in the rodeo office on golf days (Tuesdays/ Thursdays) as she and her husband Bill are both avid golfers.

Bill is also a Stampede volunteer, signing on in 1997 after he retired from BC Tel (34 years) and since then he has whacked acres of weeds on the Stampede grounds. Most Mondays in May/June, the Montgomery’s cross paths, only at dinnertime as Elsie returns home from a day in the Stampede office and Bill heads out for the regular Monday-evening work bee at the Stampede grounds where lends a hand doing whatever needs to be done. After the rodeo is over, he is part of a crew that dismantles temporary Stampede structures and cleans up the grounds.

Bill & Elsie spend the winter months in Casa Grande, Arizona – golfing, biking and enjoying the sunshine (renewing their energy level for another volunteer season)! They have two married children/four grandchildren; daughter, Koralee (2 girls) and son Bryan (1 boy, 1 girl) – all of whom reside in Surrey, BC.

– Liz Twan