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Knights of Columbus Council 676 History

Seattle Council #676, the first council in the state of Washington, was instituted on June 20, 1902. National organizer, James J. Gorman had been sent by the Supreme Council to the Pacific Northwest in the work of organizing councils in larger cities. He was very successful in his work as he instituted six councils in as many months, the Seattle Council being one of them. James Gorman PGK was so pleased with the conditions here in the Northwest that he stayed to make Seattle his home. Thomas Ivers PGK, then a member of Salt Lake City Council, tendered material assistance in the organization of the council and was later active in organization of the Prefontaine Council.J. C. Ford the president of the Pacific Coast Co., was the first Grand Knight of Council #676. Organizer James J. Gorman was the first State Deputy of the State of Washington in 1904. Frank Egan was chosen as the first Grand Knight of the Prefontaine Council in 1907.

On Nov. 20, 1909, the two councils jointly formed the Knights of Columbus Club, with five members from each council forming the board of directors. John D. Carmody was chosen as the first president of the Club. In 1913, the two councils consolidated and took the name of the Seattle Council.

With property donated to them from Mrs. Elizabeth Foss and with a successful $50,000 bond issue, the building at 722 East Union was formally opened in November of 1913. Joseph Wilwerding was the first Grand Knight of the consolidated councils. The Knights of Columbus Supreme Council Annual Convention has been held in Seattle on two occasions - the first in 1915 and again in 1973.

In 1937, Seattle Council #676 held the first Annual Gridiron Banquet honoring the football teams of O'Dea and Seattle Prep. Later years Blanchet, Kennedy, and Eastside Catholic High Schools were also recognized. The program became so large that in 1990 the High Schools opted to hold their own banquets thus ending the Gridiron program.

In 1960 the Seattle Council purchased the property north of the building from the Archdiocese and in 1970 the property in the center of the block facing Boylston from private ownership.

The Bingo program, started by Tom O' Brien, PGK and Harry Dressel in 1960, continues to support many charitable activities for the council. For the last twenty years the program has been ably managed by

Pat D' Ambrosio with PGK John Alfano and Darrell D' Ambrosio adding a helping hand as co-chairs for the last five years. In the later part of 1998, it became evident that Bingo programs were losing favor with the public and therefore the Council discontinued this activity.

In 1973, the Seattle Council joined in the first annual Knights of Columbus - Nile Temple, Saint Patrick' s Day Luncheon. The Knights and Nobles continue to share the hosting of this annual event on a home and home basis.

In keeping with the Knights of Columbus Charitable Works Program, Council #676 has donated considerable time and money to the Special Olympics, ProLife groups and Prison Ministry Programs. On March 28, 1997, Neil D Bannon, PGK was acknowledged and thanked for 25 years as Financial Secretary of Council #676.

In 1997, as we approach the millennium and our Council's 100th Anniversary in 2002, we are setting new goals for the continuation of our Council and building facilities. A comprehensive upgrading of the building's electrical system, repair and painting of the exterior and landscaping are now in progress. Leasing of additional parts of the building are being considered as a prudent investment option. In 1998, an elevator was installed providing access to all floors of the building. New security safeguards, and disabled access were incorporated as part of the remodeling of the Harvard Street entrance. The next year, a major electrical system replacement was installed throughout the building. New unisex restrooms for the disabled were added on the first floor and in the locker room. Major plumbing repair and updating was also done throughout the building to prepare the third floor for tenant occupancy. Essential improvements including men's and ladies restrooms, air conditioning, new windows, and carpeting was accomplished. Considerable work such as painting, minor repairs and general cleanup was accomplished by volunteer labor.

Our membership has increased substantially and we had particular pride in welcoming Archbishop Alex Brunett and Bishop George Thomas as members of Council #676. A STAR year was accomplished under the leadership of Grand Knight Daniel G. Donohue.

Knights of Columbus Seattle Council Officers - 2015-2016

Grand Knight

Larry Kessler

council@kofc676.org

 

Deputy Grand Knight

Joseph Kessler

sylandjoe@comcast.net

 

Chaplain

Father Lyle Konen

 

 

Warden

Alan Bonaci PGK

 alanbonaci@gmail.com

 

Chancellor

Paul Heneghan

 

 

Recorder

Phil Philbrick

 

 

Financial Secretary

Thomas Joyce PGK

financial@kofc676.org

 

Treasurer

Ben Nona PGK

benoma88@gmail.com

 

Advocate

Don Luby PGK

 

 

Lecturer

Vacant

   

Inside Guard

Drew Dungan

 

 

Outside Guard

Albert Freedman

 

 

District Mentor Romy Ablao Romarico.Ablao@kofc.org 206-399-3515

 

K.C. Club Board of Directors

 

 

 

Grand Knight

Larry Kessler

council@kofc676.org

 

Board of Directors

 

 

 

At Large

Thomas Joyce PGK

 

 

At Large

Ben Noma PGK

benoma88@gmail.com

206.979.7269

At Large

Albert Freedman

 

206.325-3410

Trustee

Alan Bonaci PGK

alanbonaci@gmail.com

206.769.8037

Trustee

Matt Ulrich

 

 

Trustee

Albert Freedman

   

Fraternal Benefits Advisor (servicing only)

Romy Ablao

Romarico.Ablao@kofc.org

206-399-3515

Knight Letter Editor

Penny Kessler

 

 

 

Washington State Council History

This history was taken from the book compiled by George C. Turk, PSD, and published in 1990

In 1901, the Board of Directors voted to expand the Knights of Columbus to California and James J. Gorman, National Organizer was sent there. On January 19, 1902, San Francisco Council 615 was instituted, followed a week later by Los Angeles Council 621. While traveling between the two new councils to insure their growth, Mr. Gorman also traveled to Portland, Oregon, and Seattle and Spokane in Washington. The first council in the State of Washington was Seattle Council 676, instituted on June 22, 1902. A week later, Spokane Council 683 followed. John F. Sullivan from Spokane Council served as Territorial Deputy during the forming years (1902-04). It took until May 3, 1904, before Washington had sufficient membership to qualify as a State Council. The First Annual Meeting of the Washington State Council of the Knights of Columbus was held in Seattle, Washington on May 3, 1904, with Mr. Gorman in the chair. Each of the seven councils (Seattle 676, Spokane 683, Walla Walla 766, Everett 763, Tacoma 809, and Bellingham 829) had two delegates present. After acceptance of the delegates' credentials, James J. Gorman's name was placed in nomination for Washington's first state deputy. A unanimous ballot was cast for Mr. Gorman. The balance of Washington's first slate of state officers were soon voted on. They were: State Secretary, E.J. Manion (Tacoma); State Treasurer, J.J. King (Spokane); State Advocate, J.J. Noethe (Bellingham); and State Warden, Thomas J. Ennis (Walla Walla). Father Saindan of Everett was later appointed as State Chaplain. During the First World War, we find 1,071 Knights from the State of Washington served their country. The membership in 1918 was 4184 -- this represented 25.6 percent of all Knights in the state.