I am extremely fortunate to have parents who instilled in me the importance of helping others from a very young age. They were swift to help anyone in need and through their actions I learned that any gesture, no matter how small, was greatly appreciated and exceedingly fulfilling.
A formative experience for me came as a member of the Daughters of the American Revolution, whose motto is “God, Home, Country” and whose mission is to promote historic preservation, education, and patriotism. For years, in my hometown in Virginia, I worked at Naturalization Ceremonies for new citizens by welcoming them, providing manuals, flags, leaflets, and by helping them celebrate. Seeing the joy on people’s faces when they became American citizens made me incredibly happy and proud. I continue to help with preservation efforts by serving on the board of the Friends of the Old Burying Ground, Brookline’s oldest cemetery where a number of our town’s founding fathers (and mothers), Revolutionary War and Civil War patriots, and slaves are buried. It brings me great pleasure to raise funds to restore and preserve the headstones, tombs, and fences and to care for this “town treasure.”
Most of my volunteer efforts come through being a parishioner at the Church of the Redeemer in Chestnut Hill. The Redeemer has a strong commitment to mission and outreach. I am a member of The Church Service League, founded by the women of the church in 1922. Every year, the CSL organizes the largest annual fundraiser—our Christmas Market. All of the proceeds from the Market are donated to many worthwhile charities in our area that address the needs of the homeless, hungry, and underprivileged. Perhaps more importantly, having a personal relationship with these organizations, from the Epiphany School and St. Stephen’s Church in Boston to the Centre Street and Brookline Food Pantries, and by volunteering my time is what matters most. I am grateful that my family also helps. We’ve collected and donated clothing, bags, and toiletries to the homeless, books and gifts for children in need, and food for the food pantries. We’ve worked together at the annual St. Stephen’s Christmas party and served lunches to the counselors at the after-school programs to keep at-risk youth safe at both the Epiphany School and St. Stephens. My sons work at the food pantries and go on a yearly mission trip to New Orleans to continue to help the people and city still in need.
Volunteering and serving continues to be an honor, blessing, and privilege in my life. Helping others connects us to one another, to our community, and to the world beyond. Roxbury Latin’s commitment to service is a truly special gift that is given to our sons. I believe whole-heartedly that this service and fellowship will help shape them into fine men by strengthening their characters and deepening their spiritual lives.