MARQUETTE COUNTY, Mich. (WJMN) – Everyone involved in Special Olympics in the Upper Peninsula knows who Pam Bahrman is.
“I like that she really helps us out a lot,” said Special Olympics athlete, Julie Johnson. ” She really takes charge and really works hard to get us everything we need. Everything set up. She just really helps out.
Bahrman is the Area Director for Special Olympics Area 36 which serves Alger, Baraga, Houghton, Keweenaw and Marquette counties.
“My daughter is a Special Olympics athlete,” said Bahrman. “That’s what the initial involvement was. Once involved, it was just… Special Olympics is just a special family.”
As area director, her main role is to bring the program to the athletes including setting up the events, and getting the athletes, coaches and other volunteers all in place.
“My main love with Special Olympics is the athletes,” said Bahrman. “You will not be exposed to any one more appreciative than the Special Olympics athletes. They are very thankful. They are not judgmental. They are just a pleasure to be around.”
“She keeps it moving,” said Jennifer Johnson. “She’ll come out and she’ll say you know, it’s the athletes, it’s the parents, it’s the volunteers that keep it going. It is really her that leads everybody to keep it going. Everyone enjoys themselves while they’re there. I know I always have a smile on my face, not just from the athletes but watching her act with everybody. She just does a lot for the community as far as Special Olympics goes.”
Johnson is Julie’s mom and nominated Pam for the Remarkable Women of the Upper Peninsula contest. Johnson told Local 3 News what kind of person it takes to do Bahrman’s job.
“Very patient,” said Johnson. “Very driven and wanting to get things accomplished. I think it’s very stressful too, maybe that’s why she laughs a lot. But I think, she’s just a very driven person with a very big heart.”
“She makes things a lot of fun and it’s not really that competitive,” said Julie. “We’re all here, we’re all together. We have fun, we do what we like to do. And yeah, she just makes things fun. She makes them better. She actually puts the work into it and things really happen because of her.”
Special Olympics is just one part of Bahrman’s busy life.
“My life outside of Special Olympics is, I currently work for the County of Marquette,” said Bahrman. “I work full time so my position with Special Olympics is a volunteer position outside of my normal work duties, and then we also have a family farm and like I said, we also have a special needs child so those are the things that keep me busy besides Special Olympics.”
With all the things she does, it doesn’t go unnoticed from these special athletes.
“Thank you so much, Pam,” said Julie. “Love you.”
“You’re the best, Pam and we thank you for everything,” said Special Olympics athlete, Nick.
“Pam is the best,” said Special Olympics athlete, Dan.
“Thank you,” said Special Olympics athlete and Bahrman’s daughter, Breanna. “I love you. You’re the best.”