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Habitat News

Senior Crew Spotlight | Dave & Chris Gospodarek

Background:
3e380f28-cf49-4e93-95ea-26f333b2606aBoth of us were raised in Manitowoc, WI. After graduation from Lincoln High School, Dave enlisted in the US Army and spent three years at Fort Knox, KY, working in the Finance Dept. After being discharged from the service, Dave went to UW-Green Bay and received a degree in finance and marketing. He worked 37 years in retail management, the last 27 years as a corporate buyer of tools and hardware for Mills Fleet Farm.

Chris worked for almost 30 years in several Wisconsin banks, retiring from Fox Communities Credit Union in 2010. We have two daughters, both happily married with three children each. Our oldest daughter and her family have lived in AZ for the past 17 years but surprised us in March with the news that they are moving to Wisconsin, settling in the Madison area where our other daughter and her family live. We will miss our trips to sunny AZ, especially in the winter, but it will be so nice having all of our grandchildren (5 boys and one girl) living only two hours away.

What made you decide to volunteer for Habitat?
After spending most of his working life sitting behind a desk, Dave was looking for something different in retirement. Habitat seemed like the perfect fit where he could work outside and take his knowledge of tools and hardware and learn how to properly use them. Habitat sounded like a great organization that helped people find a home and the volunteers could have fun helping out. When Dave attended the information meeting about Habitat, he told Chris they needed site 86873c10-ac0a-4ef7-b8cb-981876b13116support volunteers and asked if she would like to try it out. That was seven years ago and baking brownies for morning breaks has become her signature morning snack.

When not volunteering with Habitat, what do we do?
We volunteer with VITA (Volunteer Income Tax Assistance) during the Feb-Apr tax season and also work as election inspectors for Village of Harrison. We have a 75 year old cottage on Cedar Lake that is always in need of paint, repairs and clean up, but we try to sneak in some boating and swimming too. The grandchildren, gardening, yard work and biking fill up our days and weekends as well as driving around in Dave’s “dream car” – a 2001 BMW – Z3 Roadster Convertible.

What do you enjoy most about Habitat?
The co-workers always make the job more fun and the homeowners are so appreciative of all that we do. Complimentary lunches are also a big perk!

What is something about you that might be a surprise to those with whom you volunteer?
53fd5ab1-83dc-4a92-b73f-3e97121e83eeSomething others may not know about us…We took a barefoot cruise out of St Thomas on a tall sailing ship several years ago. We helped raise and lower the sails, Dave won a costume contest dressing up as a woman and we were the winners of the “Not So Newlywed Game”. We are looking forward to a trip to Alaska in August for our 47th Wedding Anniversary

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