ITNBluegrass proudly nominates Stan Wonn as its candidate for the Max and Helen Israelite 2011 Volunteer of the Year Award. Stan exemplifies what it means to be a volunteer by serving in numerous capacities within ITNBluegrass. He started as a volunteer driver in December 2008 and by the time he was asked to become a board member in May 2009, he had logged more than 1,000 miles! (He has since logged an additional 2,000+ miles!)
Stan’s talents truly came to light when he was nominated ITNBluegrass Board Chair in June 2010. We are reminded of the qualities of the ITNAmerica mascot when we think of Stan – a head for business, a non-profit heart and a willingness to work. Not to mention the spark plug! Under Stan’s leadership, our board has been revitalized and reinvigorated, and there is a renewed emphasis on running ITNBluegrass as a business. Stan has introduced several new committees – Audit, Development and Policies and Procedures, to name a few – and meets with each of the committee chairs regularly to assess progress. A major project Stan plus other board members and staff undertook in summer 2010 was to write a detailed business plan for ITNBluegrass. This was a huge amount of work but we are the better for it as it gives us increased credibility with potential funders.
And just a few weeks ago, the ITNBluegrass board approved an extensive HR manual for the office. While it was based on a template from an established business, it took hours to edit it for our small non-profit and get it into final.
Other initiatives Stan is working on are the Executive Director transition and a security policy for ITNBluegrass data (tax records, personnel records, etc.). Stan’s background is in IT; his last job before retiring from Ashland (Oil), Inc. after 45 years of service was as Manager of Global Network and Computing Information Security. Following the events of September 11, 2001, Stan was one of just a few corporate security officers who participated in the development of the US Homeland Security Department.
Now the non-profit heart. Stan says he enjoys volunteering because he “has a sense that we should all contribute to making things better, especially while we are still physically capable.” He has also shared that he is passionate about ITN’s mission because his own mother lost her ability to drive and that “on many occasions she just wouldn’t go [somewhere] rather than impose. As a result her ability to live life to the fullest was very limited.” Stan certainly appreciates the difficulties facing those who have given up driving and wants to help older people in our community overcome those difficulties.
Finally, Stan and his wife Dana also fold, stamp and mail our billing statements…every month! Maybe not the thing to end on, but certainly an illustration of “willing to work!”
Stan is truly deserving of the honor of Volunteer of the Year.
(l-r) Ride Coordinator Barbara Warburton, rider Ethel Tate and Board Chair Stan Wonn. Mrs. Tate was honored as the recipient of ITNBluegrass’ 10,000th ride!