Hale Bio
Debbie Hale
Rotary Club of Salinas Steinback, California, USA
District 5230
In 2006, Debbie joined Rotary to network and give back to the Salinas community where she worked.  Her motto as Salinas Steinbeck Club President in 2012/13 was, “Having Fun Serving Our Community and the World.” She has since served District 5230 as Area Governor (Salinas Area), Polio Plus Chair, Grants Subcommittee Chair and Board Director. 
Debbie has a passion for funding Rotary projects, both locally and internationally. Her club worked with Engineers without Borders to fund a water distribution project in Higuerito, Honduras, which she visited in 2018.  She initiated a “reverse” global grant to help fund the Salinas Chinatown Health Services Center for the homeless.  Her club is currently the international sponsor for two water supply and distribution global grant projects in rural El Salvador, with the host Club Rotario San Salvador Noroeste.  To help support these and other valuable Rotary Foundation Projects, Debbie encourages all Rotarians to contribute to the Annual SHARE fund, and leads by example: she is a Major Donor, Paul Harris Society and Bequest Society member. 
Rotary fulfilled Debbie’s dream to visit India.  She and other California Rotarians participated in India’s National Immunization Day on January 24, 2018.  With local health workers, she put life-saving drops in the mouths of children in Bareilly, Uttar Pradesh. The hospitality of the Indian Rotarians introduced her to Rotary’s warm fellowship around the world. 
People of Action fits Debbie’s Rotary philosophy: as District Governor, she plans to continue to sponsor field projects which in the past included: planting butterfly habitat, renovating a historical park, and reforesting lands devastated by wildfires.
Debbie is a retired executive who worked for 20 years at the Transportation Agency for Monterey County. There she oversaw a $3.5 million operating budget, managed  a 14-member staff, reported to a 17-member Board of elected officials and participated in the delivery of over $1 billion in local and regional transportation improvements. She is a true transportation geek - taking trains and buses, bicycling and walking, and even using electric bikes and scooters when she travels.  Debbie has twice participated in the Ride to End Polio and she is a member of the Fellowship of Cycling Rotarians.  A regular runner, she also often participates in the July 4 Firecracker 5K/10k run put on by the Santa Cruz Sunrise Rotary, near her home town of Capitola. 
Debbie is married to Andy Ward, and they live down the street from her mom Jennie, who is also a Rotarian. They all serve at the beck and call of Dora, the cat, CEO of Hale/Ward Enterprises.