As featured in Quintessential Barrington Magazine – Nonprofit News by Shefali Bhuva
VOLUNTEERS BRING many different perspectives to their role when joining a nonprofit. Our volunteer profile this month on Doug Grier highlights how experiences gained in a work environment can provide valuable assistance to a nonprofit.
Doug Grier and his partner, Joe, moved to Lake Barrington in November 2021 as they were retired and wanted to be closer to Doug’s daughter and grandchildren who live in the area.
Doug is a retired community college dean and previously worked at universities in Ohio, Texas, and Pennsylvania primarily in student activities, nonprofit management, arts programming/marketing, and continuing education. He also worked in advertising when he first moved to the Chicago area in 1999.
How did you use BAVC’s platform to find a volunteer opportunity?
I have a long history of involvement in the volunteer sphere, notably through my time as an executive director of a nonprofit in Texas and my work at Texas Tech University where I co-founded and managed a pioneering, award-winning student/community volunteer program. Hence, I was quite familiar with volunteer clearinghouses such as BAVC.
When I was considering volunteering in the area, the first thing I did was look for a clearinghouse of local opportunities. That’s how I discovered BAVC. It’s an invaluable resource! I found it very easy to search for, and select, opportunities in the area.
What volunteer roles have you had with nonprofits in Barrington?
Throughout my career, I have worked closely with municipalities. I now volunteer at the Lake Barrington Village Hall where I assist with a variety of tasks, primarily updating records and files. While it may not be the most “glamorous” volunteer position, I like it because it has helped me to meet people and learn more about the area. The folks who work at the Village Hall are wonderful, dedicated people and I enjoy working with them immensely.
I have two master’s degrees, one of which is in marketing. Initially, I looked for marketing-related opportunities as I felt I had the most to contribute to that area. I’m also an environmentalist, so I also searched for opportunities with those type of organizations.
I now volunteer with the Flint Creek/Spring Creek Watershed Partnership where I manage the Facebook page and assist with the website. I am also assisting with website updates for the Barrington Area Digital Photo Gallery (BADPG.org) which promotes awareness of the natural beauty of the Barrington area through digital imagery.
Why do you volunteer?
I was born and raised in Pennsylvania and was directly impacted by the Three Mile Island nuclear power plant incident in 1979 (we lived just a couple of miles away at the time). I think it shook me out of my teenage complacency and led to volunteering with an anti-nuclear group. Although my views on nuclear energy have since evolved, the experience set the stage for my ongoing volunteer work.
I have been relatively fortunate in my life, and I believe it is important to do something to help the community in ways that I am best able. Often, the more mundane, technical, or promotional volunteer positions are the hardest for organizations to fill so I look for those opportunities first.
I am passionate about the environment, land and wildlife conservation, and animal welfare and am always happy to be able help advance those causes. I also like the opportunity it gives me to meet people.
Published by Quintessential Barrington in Barrington, Illinois.