From: Duane (Tubby) Jackels
I would like to express my gratitude to the many people involved in Winona County’s Habitat for Humanity and its mission: Eliminate poverty housing by partnering with community members to construct simple, decent and affordable housing.
In 1993 Leah Larson’s leadership brought concerned citizens together addressing the problem of poverty housing in Winona County. In 1994 Winona County’s affiliate was started and its first home built that year.
In 1995 Nancy Iglesias came aboard as Executive Director of Habitat. Her leadership over the years has resulted in an organization engaging thousands of volunteers to partner with Habitat. In 2009 the Adith Miller Community Service Tribute Award was presented to Nancy Iglesias for her work in Habitat.
At that event Nancy Iglesias gave tribute to her staff and the dozens of leadership roles in Habitat: the boards, coordinators and chairpersons responsible for fund raising, site selection, family selection and support, and house construction; dozens of organizations - churches, colleges, universities; businesses and corporations giving financial and material contributions.
As a former construction coordinator, I am deeply grateful to the men and women who do the physical labor at the construction sites. They pour the footings for the foundations, build interior walls, install shingles and hang drywall. They learn these skills “on the job” for no experience is necessary. “They build the houses that result in homes!”
In 2009 Habitat for Humanity celebrated its 15th year. Forty homes have been built to date and more than “100 children are living in a better place.”
The latest statistic informs us that nearly eight thousand citizens are classified as “poor” in Winona County and that our county ranks seventh in the state. The challenges for Habitat for Humanity, Winona County are unremitting.
I will continue to be grateful to Habitat for Humanity, as they strive to eliminate poverty housing in Winona County.