The hours Ken has dedicated to Make-A-Wish are staggering. In his 17 years as a volunteer at the Alaska and Washington chapter, he’s helped grant the wishes of more than 270 children. Ken always devotes himself to one wish at a time. He also makes a point of staying in touch with the wish families he’s worked with and can often be seen dropping off a little gift for the child or chatting with the family at the hospital.
Since Ken joined Make-A-Wish in 1997, he’s held many roles, even serving as a board member at the Alaska and Washington chapter from 2003 to 2008. In addition to his work with wish kids, he’s been known to offer his time at special events and deliver speeches on behalf of Make-A-Wish.
Ken’s service doesn’t stop at Make-A-Wish though. He spends his (rare) free time volunteering for 28 other nonprofit organizations. Locally, Ken has been a CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocate) volunteer for 16 years, a volunteer for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society for 10 years, a volunteer for Give Kids the World, an advocate for the American Cancer Society/Relay for Life for 10 years and a volunteer for the Special Olympics since his college days. His volunteerism has taken him around the world, too. He traveled several times to Romania to work in a local children’s orphanage with Global Volunteers and to the international Special Olympics games in Dublin, Ireland.
“I often find myself thanking my lucky stars that Ken is so passionate about Make-A-Wish and the kids we serve,” said Trina Cottingham, Director of Wishes at Make-A-Wish Alaska and Washington. “He is the sort of volunteer who will do anything and everything to fill a need and will do it with a full heart. Ken’s energy and dedication to Make-A-Wish in particular, as well as all of the other organizations he volunteers for, is beyond amazing.”
Ken may be known around Seattle and the Make-A-Wish office as a model volunteer (and a thoroughly busy one at that), but to the children he serves, he’s simply their wish-granter, a kind new person in their lives who is committed to making their wish come true.