As we continue to celebrate National Volunteer Week, we are featuring the individuals who make our mission work! These outstanding JA volunteers went above and beyond for our students and schools this past year.
This year has provided a myriad of challenges, but we can always count on these individuals to rise to the top and continue to answer the call when JA students need them most. It is our pleasure to recognize these individuals for their dedication and committment to JA.
Paul exudes the JA mission as a financial education advocate and dedicated mentor. He is known to many as a staunch community engagement supporter and luckily for us continues to promote our work even behind the scenes.
"I equate Paul to Nike. He just does. Paul makes it happen," said JA Capstone Director Sam Hodapp.
For years, Paul has been an in-class program volunteer and recently a JA BizTown volunteer. Always leading the charge, Paul recruits, connects, and engages like-minded individuals at his company, Brown Advisory, to the JA cause. He's even gone as far as bringing his own family members and friends to volunteer too!
We're particularly fond of Paul for not only his dedication to the organization, but his commitment to the future generation. Paul and his team mentor and support Holabird Academy students through various JA programs and recently, Paul created an after-school club at The Crossroads School and insisted on having JA-kit based programs.
Bob Cowie & Darlene Peters
This dynamic duo from UPS has made all the difference this school year by volunteering in a unique way delivering school materials. When looking at various processes like our current delivery methods, Bob was all in to support and lead the efforts to make this more efficient.
Traditionally, materials for JA BizTown and JA Finance Park were delivered by our team members or picked up by educators. It's been a huge help to have these all-star individuals personally volunteer their time to do deliveries on our behalf -- some as far as hours away -- to ensure schools, educators and students receive the materials they need to be best prepared for classroom instruction.
If that wasn't enough, Bob was able to get all 8,000+ materials for JA Inspire to Baltimore County schools.
Even with demanding schedules, we could count on Bob and Darlene to stop by the office, grab materials and get them to our schools quickly.
And as you can see (pictured to the right), Darlene has also been spotted volunteering in JA BizTown too!
Phillip Del Bello
Phil is a veteran volunteer, who has volunteered in JA BizTown enough to know the role for almost every JA BizTown storefront. Not many JA volunteers can say that. For over 5 years, he has been a go-to mentor for JA students.
Year after year, Phil coordinates his team from CliftonLarsonAllen LLP (CLA) to join him in empowering JA students to thrive in their businesses at JA BizTown. This once small group of CLA associates has now grown in numbers to fill the entire day.
Phil has mentored hundreds of students who have come through the experience. Many that began as shy, sometimes hesitant kids, then emerge from their JA BizTown experience with Phil as confident, collaborative and financially responsible leaders. It's one of the reasons he nominated JA for his firm's foundation grant, which ultimately JA won as a grantee.
“Each time I’ve volunteered at JA BizTown it’s been a fun experience with new students who are entering the program for the first time,” said Phil. “It’s great to see the students’ excitement around this program and their engagement toward their tasks and responsibilities as an employee and citizen. They are truly invested in their work and take it very seriously.”
It is truly our honor to recognize these amazing individuals for their volunteerism and continued dedication to JA students and schools. We could not do this without their support and for that we are thankful!