• Sharon Free

Iowa Sister States Welcomes Our Ukrainian Delegates from Open World Leadership Center

Updated: Mar 4

We have been so pleased to host our Open World delegates from Ukraine this week! Their program, "Health Reform in Legislation" has been chock-a-block with informational sessions from all walks of the health field here in Iowa. The delegates met with representatives from AARP and the Iowa Department of Aging, which both addressed the aging Iowan population. They also met with Iowa Secretary of State, Paul Pate, at the Iowa Capitol, as well as with Senator Zach Nunn on the Senate floor.

At the DMACC Health Sciences building, there were 19 programs to learn about, including Fire Science, which held in its classroom an actual ambulance! Sue Dinsdale, from ICAN, came to talk to the group about how they are keeping up the fight for healthcare reform in the Iowa Legislature. Meeting with the Iowa Healthcare Collaborative taught the delegates about sustainable healthcare, and then they had a tour of Des Moines University's facilities, and became acquainted with their top-notch work in global health.

Appointments to meet with the VA and Blank Children's Hospital, as well as with the American Heart Association and government officials are yet to occur at this writing. A dinner to celebrate the delegates and home hosts will cap off the successful visit! We are so grateful to our home hosts for sharing their homes and gracious Iowa hospitality in making our Ukrainian guests comfortable during their stay here in the US.

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Monty and his wife Lori are from Indianola, Iowa. They have 2 grown daughters, 2 sons-in law, and 3 granddaughters.

He retired from teaching in 2016 after 39 years. Monty is very active in his community. He has been a local 4H club leader, County Senior 4H leader, and a member of the County 4H youth committee and is now on the Warren County 4H Foundation Board. And he spends his summers at the Annett Nature Center conducting day camps for ages 4 to 13. Monty also volunteers at the nature center for public programs and has been on the Friends of Warren County Conservation Board since it was formed.

Monty has been involved with Iowa Sister States since 2001. He was involved in a three-year high school student exchange program with Cherkasy, Ukraine. He fell in love with the country and its people and has been the chairperson of the Ukraine committee since. Monty also served on the Planning and Action Committee of ISS, and the annual fund-raising committee in 2011. He has held the Board positions of Secretary, Vice President and President, and most recently served as the Interim Executive Director.

Last Updated: jULY 15, 2020