Dobbs honored as 2023 First Lady of the Year at First Tea

Local chapters of the Snake River City Council of Beta Sigma Phi Sorority, honored Mabel Dobbs as its 2023 First Lady of the Year during a First Tea held at Weiser Christian Church. The Angel Wings Executive Director is shown above at Saturday’s event holding her two-month-old great-granddaughter Sage Barnett. Photo by Philip A. Janquart
Philip A. Janquart

Angel Wings Network works to serve patients and families touched by cancer

She is the cog in what has become a heavily relied-upon mechanism that has touched many.

 The work she does, alongside her dedicated staff of volunteers, extends far beyond any salary she may earn as head of a 501c3 nonprofit dedicated to serving families touched by cancer.
 On Saturday, March 18, Beta Sigma Phi sorority honored Mabel Dobbs as its 2023 First Lady of the Year for her work as Executive Director of Angel Wings Network. It is an organization serving families in rural communities who have been affected by cancer, providing things like gas cards and drivers so patients can get to their doctor’s appointments and treatments.
 “Since August 2013, Mabel has continued to provide services in rural Idaho where services are so extremely limited,” said Dolores Larsen, former Executive Director of ROSE Advocates, a nonprofit organization that provides resources to victims of sexual and domestic violence.
 Larsen served as emcee at the 2023 First Tea, which took place at Weiser Christian Church on Saturday, March 18 in Dobbs’ honor.
 Every year, chapters of the Snake River City Council of the Beta Sigma Phi Sorority nominate an “Outstanding Woman” for consideration as First Lady of the Year. There are four Weiser Chapters, including Xi Nu, Nu Master, Laureate Phi, and Delta Omicron. 
 The council selects a woman that members believe should be recognized for her contributions to the community. The tradition, which dates back to 1978, focuses on women who are dedicated to “giving back” or are involved in charities or service projects. The longstanding rule is that the nominee cannot be a member of the sorority. 
 “She and her team of angels have provided such an important service to cancer patients and their families,” Larsen said. “Imagine living in one of our rural communities, in a 70-mile radius of Weiser, where there is no public transportation, not even an Uber, and you need to get to a doctor’s appointment or to a treatment and there is no way to get there because you don’t have gas, a car, or anyone to take you. What do you do? 
Well, you call Mabel and she and her squad will get you there.”
 Founded in 2008, Angel Wings has become much more than just transportation for cancer patients, providing things like grocery cards, restaurant gift cards and certificates, comfort bags, emotional support and guidance through the organization’s Cancer Care Pals program, caregiver support, Cleaning for a Cause, prepared meals and food boxes, prosthetic and wig services, and more.
 Dobbs became involved in 2013 and has been moving the organization forward ever since.
 “Three years ago, I lost my husband to cancer,” said Pat Thompson during Saturday’s event. “He was sick for a long time and every once in a while Mabel would call and say, ‘I have a box down here for you.’ You have no idea how much that meant to me, to know that we weren’t forgotten because our family doesn’t live here, so, Mabel, thank you for being there for us.”
 Board member and transportation driver Eleonore Huggins said Angel Wings would not be where it is today without Dobbs.
 “If it wasn’t for Mabel, we would not be here,” she said. “She is our driving force; she is amazing. When Mabel took over, things totally changed. We have become a family unit. I am very thankful that I know her.”
 Dobbs, however, was quick to credit others.
 “Angel Wings would be nothing without these girls, our volunteers,” she said. “As we have rolled along, I have come to realize this has totally become my ministry and I appreciate everything that all of you do.”
 Special recognition was also given to volunteer, Ralph Rowley, who is currently working on his 270th blanket, which is provided to cancer patients in Angel Wings’ comfort bags.
 During the celebration, Huggins announced that Mabel was also chosen as the Grand Marshal for this year’s Weiser Valley Roundup rodeo, which takes place in June.
 To learn more about Angel Wings, visit 



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18 E. Idaho St.
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