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In the community

January 11, 2010

Cindy Donaldson, Marketing Director - Founders Insurance Group

I’m involved in a lot of “stuff” – from committees to boards to commissions . Most people think I’m crazy. I hear often ( more than I care to admit): “You are EVERYWHERE – when can you possibly have time to breath?” Truth be known, I sort of thrive on the craziness of my life. I was also brought up in a family of “community folk”. Volunteering and community service was simply what we did, it wasn’t an option.

My Dad, Bill Hageman, was one of those guys you either loved or hated. He was sort of a curmudgeon – very opinionated, loud and surely wasn’t afraid to say how he felt. I think I might have inherited a tad of his demeanor – but that is another blog. Anyway, Dad was very involved in the community – he was a volunteer fire chief for nearly 20 years, sat on most boards for the Town of Goshen (CT) and was a Selectman when he passed away a few years ago. I remember when I was younger asking him why he went to so many meetings, why he was on all these committees. In typical Dad fashion, he grumbled loudly, gave me the look that told me I had just asked the

Team Founders in the community - Doug Grieco and Joseph Lipski helping out at Torrington's Christmas Village this past holiday!

 dumbest question and then told me (I’m paraphrasing): ” I do this because a town is just a piece of land with houses on it, a community is what the people living on that land make of it.” End of discussion.

So you see, I don’t think of community involvement as a chore or something to get my name in the paper – it is simply an obligation something one must do. Imagine if everyone who lived in your town gave 1 hour per month back. Imagine the true communities that our children and their children would inherit.

Most people can afford one hour per month, and that includes you – so find a non-profit, get involved in your local government, reach out to a neighbor in need, spend some time at your local soup kitchen.

The rewards will be amazing. Trust me.

One person can make a difference. I found that out when my Dad passed away. Hundreds of people, most unknown to me, told me how my Dad had made a difference in their life, how without him they would never be where they are today. Now that is powerful stuff. I wouldn’t mind being remembered that way – would you?

So how are you going to give back in 2010? I look forward to the stories!


Cindy Donaldson – busy and loving it!

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