Real Family in a Real Community

The Klein family has roots in the Midwest and so when we discovered the National Geographic Wild show called, “the Incredible Dr. Pol”, we immediately felt ‘at home’ because it is. 

1.)   Unscripted

2.)   Real down to earth people

3.)   It’s educational, informative and inspirational and

4.)   Based on real animals, real people and real families

Therefore, when I was visiting my family this week in Michigan, we took a trip over to visit the Pol Vet Clinic to possibly get an opportunity for my daughters to meet the doctor and get behind the scenes.

True to form, this clinic feels inviting as it is swarming with animal owners that are in need of a trusted medical advisor for some type of ailment or preventative service.  From the moment you walk in the door, you feel safe in this haven.  No fancy iPads to review procedures, but traditional smiles, warm personalities and great wall art made up of locals who share their animals for adoption, services available or upcoming events like roller derby.  Yes folks, it was awesome for me to see the real people behind the scenes continue to act normal.  Nothing has changed for them but their ability to expand their reach to more people, drive more connectedness through the show and educate more people.  In fact, I understand that the local television providers don’t carry his show; so many farmers will congregate in homes of folks that happen to have access to the show.   They got the invite through Diane Jr., their Social Media Manager who invites patients through their traditional communication mechanisms to turn into the series.  But otherwise, it’s business as usual.

Employees are encouraged to have wall art, create their workspace to be their own and connect and support one another in the ‘family’ approach to business.  Really not a far cry from what Google tries to do by allowing people to draw on the wall.  As someone who spans a heart from the Midwest but a career in Silicon Valley, I was in awe of this special place.  My daughter wants to become a vet, but perhaps it was just what makes my heart sing

I personally want to thank Dr. Pol and his family for being authentic, for your tireless advocacy for this important science and practice as well as your authentic approach to community.  Additionally, for the executive producer at Nat Geo Wild and team that took the risk to support an important void that has existed in reality based programming.  Send out some tweet love via @natgeo  #drpol or check them out on Facebook.


Community Jurisdiction

For almost a year, I’ve been advocating as a community and parent leader the desire to create a ‘safe’ pathway to Double Diamond Elementary School.  I’ve contacted my legislators, the WCSD headquarters and DDES Administration.  What I’m advocating is that the fight over jurisdiction of the creek that has a cement pathway is overlooked and that these public officials focus their energies toward problem resolution and outcomes that help children focus on education.   What I’ve learned in the process is with a vision, resilience and leadership – there will be forward progress.  With the help of local media leadership and advocates – we will find a new possibility for children in our communities to get to school safely.  Since the time I escalated the issue, there are local families’ children who have received permanent scars, stitches and unnecessary medical bills which were the result of an unsafe pathway to this elementary school.  What is this all about?  What I understand to be true is that in 2000/2001, the Washoe County School District built this pathway, which was a requirement that the City of Reno made in order to build the school.  This pathway connects the school to the Double Diamond Ranch Association which is owned by the South Meadows Association, which is managed by Nevada Commercial Services.  The pathway is flooded throughout the year and recently someone put pavers in between the pathway – like step stones which allow children to avoid getting wet.  As you see in this photo – it’s no easy task to get to school – these kids are brave – or they just enjoy getting wet.  Well – I’m certain the parents who received the call from the school administration aren’t happy – nor was the child or his brother when they called 911 and Reno PD, Sheriff, Ambulance and Firefighters all arrived to take the child away on a stretcher to the ER.  Was this really necessary?  Why is the Army Corp of Engineers not leading the effort with the appropriate agencies to help us problem solve?   Parents have called all agencies pleading for their children’s welfare, yet – thus far – the call hasn’t been answered.  This is why I’m writing this blog – to document that no blood will be on ‘our’ hands as parent leaders any longer.    It is time for us to take responsibility for this simple pathway and partner together – collaborate- find a way to build a wooden bridge, clean the drains or re- engineer the pathway so that children can have a safe pathway to school.   WCSD has put up a barricade to deter children from using the pathway – since it’s been deemed a hazard.  Although I appreciate and applaud this effort – why can’t we invest our energies as leaders in this community to make it an amazing pathway that we are proud of to walk on safely together as children, parents, grandparents or guardians?  In fact, why not dedicate the new bridge or pathway to the countless children injured on it.  I believe as parent advocates in partnership with public officials focused on safety for children – we can overcome the desire to focus on ‘jurisdiction’.  In fact, we can feel proud to have a safe pathway not only to this school, but to education and to the  futures for these bright little people who will be the future employees and leaders of this great community.