Senior Crew Spotlight | Bill McCarty
Tell us a little about your background.
I was born and raised in the Chicago area. (Yes – being a Bears fan can be interesting living in this area especially when my wife is a Packer fan.) I served in the US Army in the early 70’s achieving the rank of Sargent and was stationed in Germany for a year. My wife and I have been married 43 years. I retired from Kimberly-Clark in 2009.
What made you decide to volunteer with Habitat?
I was not very familiar with Habitat but heard folks like Paul Rieden and Jim Parker talking about it many times at the KC Health Center. I was looking for something additional to do in retirement to help others and Paul gave me Jodi’s name. I was very impressed with the organization, it’s mission and the volunteer focused activities. My first impression was “what a great place to help others and learn new skills”.
When not volunteering, what do you do?
My wife and I are very active and besides traveling (we have visited 60 countries to date) we enjoy skiing, snowshoeing, biking, hiking and kayaking. In the summer, we spend three to four days a week on our boat in Sturgeon Bay where we go salmon fishing, kayaking, riding our bikes in many of the state parks and miles of country roads. In the fall, we both enjoy waterfowl and deer hunting. I also volunteer with the Coast Guard Auxiliary. I spend many hours on patrol on Lake Winnebago and Green Bay. Besides patrolling and providing assistance to recreational boaters, we also provide support for the full-time Coast Guard, WI DNR and Sheriff Water Patrols. I also inspect about 100 recreational boats a year to ensure they meet both the federal and state boating regulations. I get to meet many interesting boaters.
What do you enjoy most about Habitat?
That’s easy – the people. The paid staff members and the volunteers (especially the Senior Crew) are the most talented, easy-going but a very professional group. There has not been a time when I have worked on a site that I have not learned something new from either the paid staff or another Senior Crew member. Every person is willing to help and most importantly, every day is fun. Besides the many different learning opportunities, there is also fantastic opportunities to travel with different teams to other countries and help others in a different environment. I had the pleasure of traveling with a team from our Affiliate (led by Fred and Bonnie Ebbesen) and had a great time. I am planning on going again next year.
What is something that might surprise others?
I trained in and taught Japanese martial arts (Uechi-Ryu and Aikido) including ancient weapons for over 25 years.