07 July 2009

Inauguration Details

Long overdue!

Hello Friends and Family!

This email finds me in an airport on my way back from the Inauguration to Portland.

13 years ago I was lucky enough to be accepted into AmeriCorps. I spent 2 years in service through a program called Volunteer Maryland which trained me to be a volunteer coordinator. This experience changed my life. It gave me a job... sure, but it was much more. The greatest take away's from the experience were the knowledge that a band of community members can really "get things done" and that folks who are involved with AmeriCorps are some of the most special, talented people in the world... friends for life and partners in service.

Yesterday, we took the world stage by participating in the Inaugural parade honoring Barack Obama. Spending the day with 150 of these passionate service leaders connected to AmeriCorps was enough inspiration to last all of 2009! Walking past the presidential viewing booth mere feet from the Obama's? I wish time could have stood still! I think I strained a muscle waving so hard. It's not because I am confident that they can fix what ails the country, but I am excited because they see the potential in all of us to band together, like AmeriCorps, and GET THINGS DONE!

My commitment to national service keeps me inspired every day, and yesterday was a day I will never forget!

I took 412 pictures. Here are a few... http://www.flickr.com/photos/egilliland/sets/72157612838555784/

If you missed it my talented brother-in-law, Jerome, has created a video so we can't forget!
Everyone should have a television producer in the family! (Thanks, Jerome!)

In Service,

11 January 2009

Headed to the Inauguration!

One of my resolutions in 2009 is to be more involved in the political process. I guess going to the Inauguration is a good place to start!

Next Tuesday, January 20th, my husband and I will be amongst 150 AmeriCorps Alums walking in the Inaugural Parade.

Details to come!

18 October 2008

Is it really October?

The last couple of months have included volunteering in New York City on September 11th, volunteering lots with AmeriCorps Alums, and volunteering on a TeamWorks team on cycling with Hands On Portland!

New York City on September 11th
I had the honor of participating in an event called the Service Nation Summit on September 11th-13th in New York City. The event included a forum on service with both Presidential candidates the evening of September 11th and then a day of summit-ing on both the 12th and 13th. At the summit I heard Queen Noor of Jordan, Jeffrey Sachs, Jon Bon Jovi, Senator Chris Dodd, First Lady Laura Bush, Senator Hillary Clinton, Senator Orrin Hatch, Mayor Bloomberg, Caroline Kennedy, Alicia Keyes, and lots of other leaders talk about the importance of service. It was very inspiring!

To watch the candidates...
McCain... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cdjO055AChs.
Obama... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M1yPFwtF5M4

To learn more about Service Nation and sign your declaration of service.

As part of the summit Orrin Hatch announced a new national service bill that he and Senator Kennedy developed. It is thrilling to see national service on both candidate's agendas and to see such wonderful support from Congress for its expansion!

Hands On Portland Team Works
One great program that happens at many Hands On organizations is something called Team Works. It is an opportunity to link together a few different service projects all around one theme. I have been participating in a Team Works team all on cycling the last month. We have assembled safety kits for the Portland police to distribute to cyclists who don't have lights on their bikes, we have helped with a celebration for Bike to Work month, and tomorrow we will be at the Community Cycling Center, which is a great local biking organization. The great benefit of this format is that one can start to see how different organizations work together or how to address community needs with the new knowledge one gains from different approaches to the same need.

AmeriCorps Alums
Things are going well with Alums. Locally we hosted a great focus group on the future of Alums and mobilized to encourage Gordon Smith to co-sponsor the Kennedy Hatch Bill that I mentioned above. We now have a reputation with Smith's office as being "aggressive!" Ha! Nationally we have developed our three year strategic plan, chosen an amazing new group of Leadership Council members, and have our fall retreat in a little over a week.

TOTAL VOLUNTEER HOURS as of 10/18/08: 241.25 in 253 days. I am 12 hours behind my one hour per day goal... but I'll catch up!

19 August 2008

Vancouver Olympics Volunteering

Here is information on being a volunteer in Vancouver for the 2010 Vancouver Olympics!

Olympics Volunteers

How many volunteers do you think it takes to put on an Olympics?


Try 1,700,000!

Here is more information from the Beijing Olympics website...

I am thinking about being a volunteer in London. Anyone want to join? I bet you get a great t-shirt and maybe a coke every now and then!