Get To Know Tom Higdon, MFB’s New Volunteer Program Manager
Tom Higdon is our new volunteer program manager and will be overseeing our amazing helpers. Get to know him with this quick Q & A.
Q: Where did you grow up?
A: I was born and raised in St. Petersburg, Florida. After graduating from high school, I went to Eckerd College in St. Petersburg where I studied political science and economics. I moved around after college for work eventually landing in the Baltimore area. People often ask me if I miss the beaches, but once I saw the changing leaves of autumn in Maryland, I was hooked.
Q: When did you decide you wanted to get involved with nonprofits?
A: I started working for nonprofits when I was in high school through a program called Junior Achievement. I was one of the student leaders and was offered a part-time, paid position after school. Then, I kept working for them during college and it’s all history after that. I’ve spent almost my entire career in the nonprofit industry.
Q: Why is hunger relief important to you?
A: Years ago, after some health problems, I found myself homeless. I’ve never forgotten how scary and disorienting it felt to be truly hungry and not know where my next meal would come from.
Q: Why is volunteerism something you’ve focused on in your career?
A: My mother’s volunteerism had a lasting impact on me. When I was little, around fifth grade, she would take me with her on the Meals on Wheels route she was delivering to. She drove and I carried the meals up to the doors. Sometimes I was the only face that person would see for several days. So, even as a child, I could sense the meaningfulness of the experience.
Q: What is your favorite MFB program and why?
A: Foodworks! It helps people facing barriers to employment launch new careers preparing delicious food. I didn’t know the extent of this program’s impact before I started working here. I really got the full picture once I was able to sit down with Chef Manny and talk to him about the program. I was blown away by how amazing it is. I mean, really, what’s not to LOVE about a program that helps others while teaching students a new skill?
Q: Who was your childhood hero?
A: Captain Kirk. But it really was close, Han Solo was my No. 2 hero growing up.
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