The Fruits of Volunteerism

tempe

I just returned from several days in Tempe, Arizona observing the grading session of the NCIDQ exam. I am always amazed at what makes people leave their jobs and their weekends at home to volunteer their time to a cause.

Not-for-profit organizations operate off of their volunteers. I am approaching a year of serving as President of the Council of Interior Design Qualification. When my husband, who knows how busy my design practice is, asked me why I would want to do that, my answer was that I didn’t  know how not to. A friend told me that my clients would not care what was on my resume. That caused me to do some soul searching for the answer of why I would give that amount of time. I know that it will give back to my profession that I still love as much as my first day in it. I will get to travel over the US and Canada, meeting with others leaders and volunteers, eating great food and seeing things I would never see on my own. But I think that mostly I am doing it for myself, for the personal growth. Volunteerism is a low hanging fruit that anyone can pick and profit from. And it looks great in your obit.

Tragedy in New Orleans

cropped-photo.jpgI attended the IDEC (Interior Designers Education Council) in New Orleans in March. We landed on Fat Wednesday and we’re amazed at the beads still hanging in the trees and wrought iron balconies. We did all the tourist things and spent a long afternoon at the MOMA New Orleans. What an amazing museum! The outdoor sculpture garden was enchanting. After the museum visit and a glass of wine, a past president of NCIDQ and resident of New Orleans picked us up and took us on a driving tour of the town. We spent a lot of time discussing the tragedy and recovery from Katrina. When driving through the garden district, we asked our guide if the waters rose into these magnificent homes. Our tour guide (who will remain nameless), replied that this area was spared from the flooding, but lost electricity. All the five star restaurants here lost refrigeration and consequently all their fine wines. Only a local would see it on this level. Katrina spared no onenew orleans sculpture!