Profiles in Giving: LeAnne Bremer, Humane Society for Southwest Washington

LEANNE BREMER

All of the great nonprofit organizations in the Southwest Washington area would not be able to run quite as smoothly without their board of directors. Organizations’ board of directors are made up of people in the community who volunteer their time, knowledge and guidance to these organizations in addition to continuing to work their “day jobs.”

LeAnne Bremer, partner at Miller Nash, is one of those people in the Southwest Washington business community who volunteers her time with numerous nonprofit boards. Bremer is currently involved with numerous boards and committees around the area, including being chair of the Humane Society for Southwest Washington Board of Directors.

The Vancouver Business Journal caught up with Bremer to talk about her involvement with the Humane Society for Southwest Washington board, along with the other boards and committees she’s involved with, and how it goes hand-in-hand with her professional life.

VBJ: What does your current role as chair of the Humane Society for Southwest Washington Board of Directors entail? What are some of your main responsibilities? How long have you been involved with the organization/what was your first role being involved with the organization? 

LeAnne Bremer: I am responsible for leading the board of directors’ meetings and participating in the executive committee meetings of the organization. I am the main board contact for our president, Andrea Bruno, as issues within or affecting the organization arise that often require follow up to resolve. We also discuss topics for upcoming board meetings, retreats, and communications related to the organization.

My first interaction with HSSW was as a customer, having adopted Gevrey, Koko, Sierra, Suzuki, Esme, and Biscuit over the years! I joined the board in 2011, and since then I have participated in various committees and fundraising events.

VBJ: In the past, what other nonprofits/organizations have you been a board member for? What other nonprofits/organizations have you been involved with in any way (volunteering, etc.)?

Bremer: Currently, I am also chair of the Clark College Foundation Board, and on the boards of the Greater Vancouver Chamber of Commerce and Educational Service District #112. In the past, I have been on the boards of the YWCA, Council for Homeless, Free Clinic of Southwest Washington, and the Columbia River Economic Development Council.

VBJ: What first made you want to be involved with area nonprofits? What made you want to be a board member?

Bremer: I am a true believer in giving back to the community with time and treasure to help improve lives and livelihoods for the greater good. I fully support the missions of the organizations I have been involved with and want to help them all succeed. As a board member, my goal is always to contribute to these nonprofits in a substantial way and ensure their success for years to come.

VBJ: As far as your professional life, tell me a little bit about your career background, and what you do now and how you got where you currently are today?

Bremer: I have been a practicing attorney for 33 years, based in Southwest Washington for my whole career. I provide advice and assistance on land use permitting and real estate transactions related to development, and I also serve as general counsel for the Port of Longview. At Miller Nash, I am partner-in-charge of the Vancouver office and serve on the Executive Committee. I would say hard work, support from others, and a little bit a luck got me to where I am today.

VBJ: Does it ever feel overwhelming having your day-job duties, along with your board duties and, of course, other personal/family duties, etc.? How do you balance all these roles?

Bremer: As you can tell from my prior answers, I have a hard time saying no to serving my community! It has been very challenging at times to manage my work, volunteer in the community, and have a home life. I could not do it all without the tremendous support of my husband, Bob Mayfield, my family, my colleagues at Miller Nash, and all of the other outstanding individuals in the organizations in which I serve. It’s a cliché, but, it truly does take a village.

Joanna Yorke is the managing editor of the Vancouver Business Journal. She has worked in the journalism field since 2010 after graduating from the Edward R. Murrow College of Communication at Washington State University in Pullman. Yorke worked at The Reflector Newspaper in Battle Ground for six years and then worked at and helped start ClarkCountyToday.com.

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