Habitat volunteer is an IT specialist
Focused, in a blue-and-white button down shirt, Alan Agle works over a computer in the technology room he created.
Over the past five years Agle has volunteered to perform a plethora of jobs for Summit County’s Habitat for Humanity of which IT specialist is only one. He puts in an average of 20 hours a week, and sometimes tops 100 when a construction project is beginning.
"All of our computer systems are modernized because of Alan," explained Habitat for Humanity director Lisa Schneider. "Not only has Alan given lots of his time and talent, but he has a pioneering spirit in what he brings to his volunteering with us that has brought the organization from being very ‘under the radar’ as a non-profit in town to being ‘on the map.’"
His contributions have allowed Habitat to move forward with its goal of providing sustainable, low-income housing. Community members can qualify through proven need and willingness to work on the house and pay.
"People end up paying way too much in rent to have a roof over their heads. It is a problem that is perpetual in our community because we have low service sector wages and we have very high housing costs," explained Schneider. "It’s not an issue of folks not wanting to work hard to build a life; it costs a lot to live here."
Agle began volunteering with the non-profit as a consultant when his daughter alerted him to Habitat’s need for help with green building. The son of an architect, Agle has had a life-long interest in green building and green building certification and immediately offered his assistance. This year he assisted with the creation of green-certified houses off of Marsac.
"Alan oversaw the coordination of all the green aspects of this build to make sure that we were in alignment with the LEED Platinum criteria and the Energy Star criteria," relayed Schneider.
Although he majored in math at Middlebury and geophysics at Princeton, the retired airline pilot has kept himself up to date with the latest in green and computer technology through books, practice, and seminars.
"Learning is a constant thing," Agle remarked.
Besides houses, Agle has built relationships during his time at Habitat that have kept him glued to the non-profit.
"I think when a volunteer builds into an organization it just becomes such a family you couldn’t ever leave them."
Meredith Reed was elected to a two-year term as chair of the Summit County Democratic Party and said she sees an opportunity to ride the so-called blue wave that saw a Democratic surge nationally and within the state.