The Home Depot Foundation and the Team Depot program offer opportunities for our associates to give back to the communities that we serve. Each and every day, our associates partner with nonprofits and roll up their sleeves to repair and beautify homes, facilities and community spaces for those in need. These initiatives serve as a powerful experience for those being helped. But often, the experience is as powerful for volunteers as well. In some instances, giving back truly changes the lives of associates. We profile some of those changed lives here.
Scott Krueger – Store Manager, Store 2305 in Louisville, Ky.
Scott has been involved with Team Depot since 2006. He served first as a volunteer, then as Team Depot Captain and now as a District Captain. In 2012, Scott and Store 2305 established a relationship with Active Heroes, a local organization that has assisted more than 1,800 military families, veterans and wounded warriors with support services.
After a year that included multiple Team Depot projects and a grand-prize winning appearance in the Foundation’s Aprons in Action competition, Scott was asked by the president of Active Heroes to join their board of directors. He willingly accepted.
“The experience of working with this organization and helping with their success is a beautiful thing,” Scott said. “It aligns directly with our values wheel and it’s very rewarding.”
Jimmy Van Loon – Freight Department Supervisor, Store 4915 in Green Bay, Wis.
Jimmy has always enjoyed artistic expression. His hobby was derailed, however, when he badly cut his left hand in an accident at home, nearly losing his thumb. At times, he felt that he was ready to give up his artwork. But last year, he decided to give it another shot and participated in the Celebration of Service patriotic apron decorating contest – ultimately winning the competition. Though the task of designing and painting the apron wasn’t easy, the opportunity to artistically show appreciation for those who have served our country turned out to be just the push he needed.
Over the last year since the competition ended, Jimmy has continued with his art and has nearly completed a huge project – an 8-foot by 18.5-foot mural for a Disabled American Veterans center in De Pere. And his comeback all started with an apron!
“I am a Desert Storm veteran and I really wanted to paint an apron for my fellow brothers and sisters,” Jimmy said. “That decision has inspired me to honor all veterans in my community.”
Judy Custer – Pro Account Sales Associate, Store 2717 in Burton, Mich.
Judy Custer began working at The Home Depot in August 2000. By September, she had already found her way to Team Depot. It all began with a chance encounter with her store’s Team Depot Captain, who was working hard to pull together materials needed for a last-minute project at an apartment complex that had burnt down. Judy quickly volunteered to help. She was a huge asset to the project and was surprised a short time later by the news that she had been named the store’s next Team Depot Captain and also the District Team Depot Captain.
With nine stores in her district, Judy has made community service her personal mission and has worked tirelessly to make her district’s program incredibly successful. In 13 years, she has organized and facilitated hundreds of projects and disaster relief efforts. Judy has seen firsthand how time flies when you’re having fun.
“I love my job,” Judy said. “I get to help people, I get to fix things and make their lives easier. I just love it.”