Meet Core Volunteer Dave Woodlee
“When I saw the opportunity to build at Sheridan, I thought, ‘I know that place!’” shares Dave Woodlee, a core construction volunteer at Sheridan Square. “I grew up about a five minute walk from here. When I came on site the first time, I kept seeing the school, like where the playground and the blacktop and field were.”
Dave attended Fort Logan Elementary School, the site upon which 63 homes will make up Sheridan Square, and feels a special connection to building where he grew up. “Though I’ve been away from the community for a long time, I’ve always had that connection. I’m 66 and still remember my elementary days here. I wasn’t a great student, but I got a good start here.”
Dave’s start in Sheridan led him to a career in the Air Force and then to working in finance with Empower Retirement. Now that he’s “officially retired” he’s able to fulfill a long-held desire to build with Habitat.
As a volunteer, Dave brings his experience as a woodworker to the site, with an appetite to learn more about building houses. “I’ve fixed and repaired houses I’ve been in all my life – mostly out of necessity when you’re a young airman with limited resources, you find the best ways to do things,” he explains. “But I wanted to learn more. I’ve never built a house. So I’ve learned a lot coming out to build with Habitat.”
Over the past year of coming out to build on a regular basis with Habitat, Dave has learned a lot, both in construction and with the people he builds with.
“It’s been really neat talking to some of the families who are moving in, talking with them about the Sheridan school district,” describes Dave. “I love the idea of a people getting a house, but it’s not a hand-out. They have to work for it and pay for it and it’s a great concept.”
And why does Dave keep coming back to build with Habitat?
“The people I work with are what keep me coming back. I enjoy working with the other regular volunteers. The staff is great. AmeriCorps volunteers are outstanding. It’s a great experience.”