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Congratulations to JD Carballo, our 2020 Exceptional Volunteer

Houston Audubon announced the 2020 Laura Singleton Exceptional Volunteer at a virtual event celebrating our volunteers at the conclusion of National Volunteer Week. Our deserving honoree for 2020 is JD Carballo, volunteer maintenance technician at Edith L. Moore Nature Sanctuary. 

JD has been an active and frequent volunteer at Edith L. Moore since 2014. We chose to honor him because of the unique and wide-ranging projects he has taken on throughout the sanctuary, including showing up during times of crisis. Due to his close proximity to the sanctuary, JD sometimes arrived on site before staff to take care of any issues. He also helped us prepare the sanctuary for unprecedented issues, such as the pandemic and extreme weather events. He kept an eye on the sanctuary and made sure cameras were up and gates were secure when staff were working from home. JD's contributions went above and beyond, showing a true sense of ownership and pride in our sanctuary. 

Here are some things those who have worked with JD had to say about him:

“JD has distinguished himself as knowledgeable and generous, a combination that makes the never-ending work of sanctuary management possible. Whether it's gates, cameras, switches, HVAC, irrigation, you name it - he has fixed it twice. Plus, he is passionate about getting to the source of a recurring issues, be they mechanical or people-driven challenges. He does all of this with no ego or expectation. JD is a joy to work with.” -Richard Gibbons, Conservation Director 

 “He helped with everything. Bridge designs, Harvey recovery, cabin maintenance, invasive species removal, repairs in the office, animal enclosure fixes! Everything! I called him our MacGyver!” -Bethany FosheĆ©, former Edith L. Moore Sanctuary Manager 

 “Often JD tackles projects without us knowing. He simply sees things and fixes them. Then follows up with a detailed explanation of what he found and what he did, usually starting with 'I was thinking about this last night and had this part in my garage.' He replaced a leaky valve in the water fountain, replaced GFCI outlets, and cleared debris from the creek as needed. All in a day’s work – or volunteerism. Always ready with a smile and full of good humor, it is a delight to run into JD in the sanctuary and find out what he is up to.” -Rachel Schipul, Operations Manager 

Congratulations JD, and thank you to all of the volunteers that make it possible for us to achieve our mission!

By Lauren Miheli, Membership and Volunteer Manager, Houston Audubon


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