Current employer or place of business: High Five Media
Organization(s) I volunteer with: The Giving Circle, Vancouver Neighborhood Alliance, Middle Class Alliance, President of the NW Neighborhood Association, YWCA Clark County board member, TisBest Philanthropy board member, Heifer International
How I got involved: It started after I retired from the U.S. Air Force and was trying to figure out what I wanted to do with the rest of my life. I had the opportunity to choose my next move, so I decided to volunteer with an organization I supported, Heifer International. Using social media as a communication tool online and setting up a booth at numerous events (farmer’s market, volunteer conferences, holiday bazaars) offline, I got connected to the local and national nonprofit community very quickly. I turned my focus to helping organizations in Vancouver during the recession because I saw the greater need in the place I call home. If I wanted to live in a good community then I need to help to make it great. After that revelation, it’s been nonstop community involvement and activism for me because “if not me, then who?”
Why I give back: “You are defined by what you give.” This simple message is my compass and motivation to be involved in our community and make it a great place to live, work and stay.
Proudest moment as a volunteer: Volunteering with my partner, Bryan Dainty. It feels good to volunteer. But, it feels better to volunteer with someone you love. I tell the organizations, “You’re lucky because if you get me as a volunteer, then you get Bryan too – a two-fer.”
What local challenge or issue are you most passionate about? Getting more people to vote in Clark County is my next challenge – especially, the younger demographic. The voter turnout in Clark County is pathetic. Every year, less and less people are voting in our primary and general elections. I understand that people are busy with their lives and don’t have time to do the proper research on issues or candidates, but voting is a privilege that shouldn’t be taken for granted or ignored. I didn’t serve 20 years in the military so people can think voting is a nuisance or inconvenience. Voting in local elections has a direct and immediate impact on our community. Come on people! Vote!
Just for fun: What are your hidden talents? I was a DJ on a radio station in Australia. I can name just about every 80’s pop song and artist in less than 10 seconds. Currently, I’m one of the producers and DJ (aka “DJ NoHo”) at Hello Vancouver! A live community talk show in Vancouver.
“Paying it Forward: Volunteer Businessperson of the Week” is sponsored by Pacific Continental Bank.