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Bringing Year of Volunteers to Washington, D.C.
02 February 1999
by Chuck Hennigan

Chuck Hennigan has been in the field of volunteer management for more than 20 years. As the Volunteer Services Manager at Lacey Fire District Three in the state of Washington, Chuck has had his share of 'hands-on' experience.

Chuck is the first fire-service related volunteer managers to have been certified through the University of Colorado Volunteer Management Program. Chuck chairs the Professional Association of Volunteer Managers and DOVIA (Directors of Volunteers in Agencies) Washington. He also volunteers as the Deputy Fire Chief at Griffin Fire District Thirteen.

Chuck's most important recent role is that of 'creator' of the state of Washington International Year of the Volunteer 2001 (IYV2001) initiative. After attending a presentation at a Points of Light national conference in 1999, Chuck decided to take the lead in designing events and activities to celebrate this special year.

Under Chuck's direction, a plan for a statewide event began to take shape. Chuck involved Gary Locke, Governor of Washington, and was able to create one of the first state proclamations for IYV2001. Chuck also engaged other groups to create recognition banners, special polo shirts with the IYV2001 logo, and began making presentations throughout the state on the IYV2001 initiative.

Because of his efforts and communication with the United Nations Volunteers (UNV) the UN-designated focal point for IYV 2001, Chuck's photo was the first featured on the IYV2001 website. In July 2001, a special statewide event will be held at the Washington State Capitol and Moses Lake, to celebrate, recognize and promote volunteering.

Word of Chuck's good work has spread. Based on his 'global' knowledge about IYV2001, Chuck has presented his ideas both nationally and internationally. He has also been featured on the 'Volunteer Today' website, which highlights his efforts on behalf of the state of Washington. Chuck has responded to scores of requests from all over the United States for samples of proclamations, contacts and other ideas that relate to IYV2001.

Chuck has been asked to represent the state of Washington at the opening ceremonies for IYV2001 at the United Nations on 28 November. In a recent article in The Olympian, Chuck was quoted as saying "it's a privilege to join a celebration of volunteers from all over the world. I value the work of those who donate their time helping others."