Gary Trueblood is Rockford Habitat’s Assistant Construction Manager, which means that he wears many hats within our organization. He helps with everything from construction management to repairs, and this year, he’ll even be the house leader for our Community Build!
Gary got connected to Habitat as a volunteer about five years ago. His first volunteer experience with Habitat was on a build for a Habitat partner family that went to his church. Here’s a quick fun fact: on the construction site, Gary worked alongside Jack, who is now our Construction Manager. Jack and Gary had actually met each other 10 or 15 years before that when their sons played high school soccer together. Gary also went to the same high school as Jack’s wife, Beth. It’s definitely a small world!
After volunteering on that build site, the rest is history, and now Gary and Jack work together every day.
“I worked all summer volunteering there, and then volunteered another year or so, and then the opportunity came up that I could retire and work part time for Habitat,” Gary said.
Gary loves working for Habitat because of the way that he gets to use his talent and gift for construction to support people in his community.
“What I love is just to be able to serve the community, and to able to see people become homeowners and get into a nice, safe, affordable housing situation,” he said.
He also shared that he enjoys repairing and rebuilding homes.
“That’s kind of a different construction skill than building new houses. You’ve got to really be creative and think on how to repair things and how to fix things,” Gary said.
As he completes repair projects, Gary also enjoys helping Habitat homeowners learn how to do some simple projects around their homes.
“I like to try to teach people how to fix things, and how to do things themselves, so they can be self-supporting later on,” he said. If homeowners learn how to make simple repairs around their homes, they won’t have to hire contractors for those projects in the future.
When Gary isn’t doing a home repair or helping out with Habitat-related work, he enjoys being active. He likes all kinds of outdoor activities, including surfing, biking, hiking and running. He has run 13 marathons and several triathlons over the course of his life! Gary also enjoys golfing, and hopes to hit his second hole in one someday—his first one was in 1978 in Florida.
Gary is incredibly dedicated and hardworking, and our work would not move forward in the same way without him. We are so thankful for the care and quality that he builds into Habitat homes and the way he serves the Rockford community!