We are thrilled to announce that we recently hired Tyler White as our Office Manager. Tyler just completed a term of service through the AmeriCorps program with Rebuilding Together Twin Cities, serving as our Safe at Home Coordinator. In that capacity, Tyler was responsible for managing all aspects of our Safe at Home program. Tyler holds a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from the University of Southern Maine. While earning his degree, Tyler worked for the Home Depot, gaining valuable experience and knowledge about home repair and construction. Tyler also has experience both as a volunteer and an intern for various nonprofit organizations. Welcome Tyler!
Rebuilding Together Twin Cities was incredibly fortunate to have Lisa Berglund and Tyler White serve as AmeriCorps members with us over the last year. Their terms of service ended this month, and we would like to thank them for their hard work and dedication.
Lisa Berglund served as the AmeriCorps Project Coordinator, working alongside our Construction Manager to oversee our Home Repair and Nonprofit Facility projects from start to finish. Lisa is planning to move to Los Angeles where she will pursue a PhD in Urban Planning at the University of California at Los Angeles.
Tyler White served as the AmeriCorps Safe at Home Coordinator and managed all aspects of the Safe at Home program. Tyler has accepted the position of Officer Manager for Rebuilding Together Twin Cities. We are thrilled that he’s going to remain on staff!
Lisa and Tyler have been incredible to work with over the last year. Your hard work, dedication, professionalism and enthusiasm for our mission have proven invaluable. Best of luck with this next chapter of your lives!
Last month, I met a homeowner with a truly special and remarkable story.
I arrived at the home only aware of the homeowner’s basic information and what home safety and accessibility modifications we planned to perform to accommodate a warm, safe and independent lifestyle. I was not there to perform the preview for this project, so learning about the unfortunate disadvantage this man was living with that day left me in shock and wonder.
John was an All-American track athlete. He was featured and covered in popular running-based magazines and maintained a vigorous exercise regimen for most of his life. John excelled nationally from the time he arrived at Washburn High and graduated from college at the University of Minnesota in the long jump, hurdles, shot put, high jump and 1,000 meter run. He loved surfing along the shores of the California coast as a young adult and was fond of woodcarving. John was an outstanding and devoted competitor who would surely live an independent and healthy life.
We sometimes forget that life can change in a single moment.
On February 13, 2008, John was found on the track of the University of Minnesota’s Field House laying face down. Bystanders rushed over to help him as they immediately called 9-1-1. John was rushed to the hospital in an ambulance where both his health and fate were unknown.
After four and a half days in a coma, John was diagnosed with having a heart attack. Even after months of rehabilitation, John remained in a state where he would live a complicated independent life, if he chose to live that way. With limited walking mobility, a distinguishable speech adaptation, diminished hearkening ability, and restricted use of his hands, John chose to stay in his home.
John was born in his house in South Minneapolis, and at 61, John had spent his entire life in that home. Although his pride of being a homeowner never diminished, his ability to maintain his home did. On September 15th, we installed handrails going to the basement and second floor, grab bars in the bathroom and handles along doorways through our Safe at Home program so that John could live a safer and more independent life. John is now being considered for our Home Repair program, which would provide additional improvements and modifications to his home.
John’s story is a reminder that life is precious and can change suddenly. More importantly, John’s life is a valuable lesson that we are not defined by the obstacles we are confronted with, but how we choose to overcome them.
Written by: Tyler White, Safe at Home Coordinator
We are proud to welcome three new AmeriCorps members to the Rebuilding Together Twin Cities team: Lisa Berglund, Alex Rosselli and Tyler White.
Lisa, AmeriCorps Project Coordinator, will be responsible for managing our home repair projects from start to finish, including previewing the home, developing a workscope, creating a budget, identifying volunteer and material resources needed to complete the home repairs, and supervising the work. Lisa holds a Bachelor of Science in Architecture from the University of Michigan and recently received a Master’s degree in Urban Planning and Design from the Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm, Sweden. She has also held several internships and has volunteered for various organizations.
Alex, AmeriCorps Volunteer Coordinator, will be responsible for recruiting, training, coordinating and retaining volunteers to provide critical home repairs for the homeowners we serve. Alex recently received a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Macalester College in St. Paul. He has worked on several political campaigns and has experience recruiting and supervising volunteers. Alex is passionate about affordable housing, education and economic development.
Tyler, AmeriCorps Safe at Home Coordinator, will be responsible for managing all aspects of our Safe at Home program. Tyler recently received a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from the University of Southern Maine. While earning his degree, Tyler worked for the Home Depot, gaining valuable experience and knowledge about home repair and construction. Tyler also has experience both as a volunteer and an intern for various nonprofit organizations.
Rebuilding Together, Inc. currently has 66 AmeriCorps members serving in 30 Rebuilding Together Affiliates in 20 states. The goal of the CapacityCorps program is to build the capacity of grassroots Rebuilding Together programs so they can be more sustainable, effective, and efficient in helping homeowners in need. This is the fourth year that Rebuilding Together has been awarded an AmeriCorps grant through the Corporation for National and Community Service.