Name: Greg Pittman
Title: Executive Director
Organization: Meals on Wheels of Texoma
How did you become interested in this work?
I first became involved with Meals on Wheels upon the death of my grandmother. My family and I were able to focus entirely on my grandmother thanks to the selfless and incredible acts of kindness of myriad volunteers from hospice and respite care organizations. The difference they made in our lives during this difficult time served as a reminder that I, too, could be doing something to improve the lives of others. As if in answer to my thoughts, there was a piece on the news that same evening about Meals on Wheels needing volunteer delivery drivers and the very next day I began volunteering for Meals on Wheels Texoma.
What drives your passion?
I find that I am most motivated when I am helping others. The knowledge that the work I do has an immediate and positive effect on the lives of the seniors we serve sustains me, feeding my passion, and giving me a reason to come to work every day.
Did you have a mentor or role model? Yes, I have worked with many extremely talented individuals. I have been fortunate to have had a number of mentors who have coached me and taken me under their wing. Knowing that they invested their time and energy to help me realize my full potential serves as a reminder of both how fortunate I have been and the opportunity I have to do the same for someone else.
What’s the biggest challenge in your work?
In a general sense, my biggest challenge is usually myself. Between the constant stream of email, phone calls, webinars, and meetings, there is no shortage of opportunities to become distracted, or at least that is the way it is in my office. These constant distractions coupled with my distractibility, I have found good work habits to be my saving grace. I highly recommend a book called “Getting Things Done” by David Allen. The methodology he prescribes has brought order and productivity back into my life.
What’s the best advice that you have ever received? It is better to say no to something than to say yes and do it poorly.
What is your vision for Meals on Wheels Texas in the upcoming year?
Meals on Wheels Texas will create added value for our members through a host of resources and initiatives beginning with our new website that will go live on June 1st. The website has many valuable resources such as the virtual library (which has just been refreshed with timely, relevant documents that include everything from examples of personnel manuals to board bylaws); a Find a Meal search function will add proximity mapping, making it easier than ever for seniors to find you; and tools and information to make it easier than ever to contact your elected officials to support the advocacy work of the Meals on Wheels Association of Texas coalition. We are already hard at work planning next year’s conference in Fort Worth. In short, our vision is to provide our members with the leadership, training, resources and supports they need.