La Crosse, WI (WXOW) ----- This month's Jefferson Award winner, John Young has been volunteering for over 50 years. He's literally transformed the village of Soldier's Grove.
John is originally from La Farge. He credits his upbringing and military background for his work ethic and strong desire to give back to the community. There's not a person in Soldier's Grove that doesn't know him because john is one of those people who acts. When he sees a need, he steps in to fix it. The Fire Department needed new trucks. He made it happen. He also organized a rescue squad for an area that lacked their own resources. Now they cover a 20 mile radius. He started a medical clinic too.
John says everyone can volunteer and if you don't know where to start, here's what he suggests you do. "Just look in the paper. There's a lot of places to volunteer. If you like it, keep it up because that's what I always did. I rarely got anything that I didn't like but if I did, I'd stick it through. Volunteering is great."
John has made the most impact with Couleecap, an organization that helps impoverished families in four counties. When he started with the organization, it had a staff of four and a one hundred thousand dollar budget. Today, they have a staff of 80 with an 11 million dollar budget.
The Executive Director, Grace Jones said John has missed two meetings in forty years and has been re-elected to the board 38 times.
You can nominate someone for a Jefferson Award at our website wxow.com