Partners for Patriots

A Partners for Patriots service dog shows how he can make a bed in a 2013 file photo. Partners for Patriots, which provides service dogs to help disabled veterans with daily activities, was one of eight local nonprofits that received $25,000 gifts from Missouri River Historical Development on Monday. 

SIOUX CITY -- Missouri River Historical Development Inc. presented holiday gifts totaling $200,000 to eight local nonprofit organizations Monday.

Partners for Patriots, Le Mars Little League, Jackson Recovery Centers, Pier Center for Autism, Women Aware, Sioux City Elks Lodge No. 112, Crittenton Center/Emergency Shelter and Youth Development, and the Community Basket each received a $25,000 gift during a dinner Monday night at Main & Abbey at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Sioux City.

MRHD is the local nonprofit that holds the Hard Rock's state gaming license, and distributes 4.25 percent of the casino's gross revenues to charitable and civic groups.

“It is MRHD’s privilege to support local nonprofits that contribute so much to local residents’ quality of life,” said MRHD President Dakin Schultz, who emceed the event. “We thank them for their dedication and work."

MRHD board member Linda Linduski, chair of its holiday gift committee, presented the gifts to the nonprofits' representatives:

-- Martha McMinn and Cindy Brodie for Partners for Patriots, which obtains, trains and provides service dogs to disabled veterans at no cost to the veterans.

-- Heath Husk, Annette Kuiken and Teresa Magnussen for Le Mars Little League, which will use the gift to help restore the nonprofit’s John Britton Complex, where Woodbury, Plymouth and Sioux county teams compete. On Sept. 21, the nearby Floyd River flooded the complex, destroying all 64 teams’ equipment, along with uniforms, a concession stand, storage buildings and field equipment.

-- Ben Nesselhuf, vice president and chief development officer, and his wife, Angie Schneiderman, for Jackson Recovery Centers. Since its 1976 beginning, Jackson Recovery has grown to be the largest addiction treatment center in Iowa.

-- Miranda Smalley, director of Pier Center for Autism, and Gary Turbes, executive director of Mid-Step Services. In the fall of 2014, Mid-Step Services acquired Pier Center for Autism, the only Siouxland therapy center that focuses on improving the lives of individuals with autism spectrum disorder.

-- Kristine Bornholtz, executive director, and Jennifer Harry, board of directors president, for Women Aware, a nonprofit that works to connect women and men “living on the edge” to resources needed to become productive and stable members of the community.

-- Denise Melo, exalted ruler, and Angel Miller, past exalted ruler who runs the Sioux City Elks Lodge No. 112 Christmas Basket Program, and works to help veterans and youth.

-- Executive director Marian Burnett and emergency shelter program director Ed Huff for the Crittenton Center’s programs and the Emergency Shelter and Youth Development.

-- Diane Pilar and Kathy Myres for the Community Basket, a mobile food pantry that distributes food to food-insecure households in eight Northwest Iowa rural communities.

This year's holiday gifts bring MRHD’s total contributions and pledges to local nonprofits and governmental entities to nearly $35 million since 1994. An additional $2.25 million has been pledged to recreational, cultural and fine arts projects.

Monday's dinner at the Hard Rock also honored five outgoing MRHD board members: Linduski (2001-2018), Treyla Lee (2005-2018), Doug Young (2005-2018), Carolyn Ellwanger (2007-2018) and Dave Bernstein (2011-2018).

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