Longtime Kiwanian recognized for 35 years with Poulsbo club

Maldor “Jake” Jacobson began his service with the club in 1984

For 35 years, Maldor “Jake” Jacobson has been a fixture at the weekly meetings and events hosted by the Kiwanis Club of Greater Poulsbo. Now approaching 90 years old, Jacobson has decided that it has come time to say goodbye to the club and recently attended his last meeting, where he was honored by his fellow club members for his service.

Jacobson said age and some mobility issues were the impetus behind his decision to leave.

“I had a good run there, with good people and I enjoyed it,” Jacobson said of his time with the Kiwanis Club of Greater Poulsbo. “It was kind of tough to leave but my knees told me to just take it easy.”

A heart attack last fall, left Jacobson a bit short of breath as well, but the 89-year-old is quick to brush that off.

“I’m recovered from that,” he said. “They told me I have to start taking it easy.”

In June Jacobson will be turning 90 years old and with his years have also come a wealth of memories from his time with Kiwanis. Some 25 years of his service with the club, Jacobson said, were spent managing the club’s endowment fund. Jacobson was also known as the unofficial chaplain for the club, often offering a prayer at the beginning of each meeting.

“They were like a family,” Jacobson recalled, noting that when his own wife was suffering from the effects of dementia, another Kiwanian’s wife offered to take care of Jacobson’s wife, while he attended the weekly meetings.

Others in attendance at Jacobson’s last meeting shared their own memories of the man.

“From the first meeting I remember going to, to now, it does not look like you’ve aged a single day,” one audience member said to Jacobson, prompting a burst of laughter from the audience and the honoree. Also at the meeting was Melanie Bozak, the governor elect for Kiwanis’ Pacific Northwest District, Bozak presented Jacobson with the Legion of Honor Award. The award is bestowed upon Kiwanians who have served more than 25 years.

Of his award, Jacobson said he was honored and that he appreciated the sendoff from his fellow club members. As for what the future holds for “Jake” — as his friends call him — it seems a bit of traveling might be in order.

“I’m just probably going to take it easy and smell the roses, so to speak,” Jacobson said. “I’m still pretty active, I can still do things but I just can’t do them very fast. I think I’m going to travel.”

—Nick Twietmeyer is the editor for the North Kitsap Herald, Central Kitsap Reporter and Kingston Community News. Nick can be reached at ntwietmeyer@soundpublishing.com