Real Heroes Biographies!
The Richardson Real Heroes program seeks to recognize the “silent generosity” of people who give of themselves to benefit Richardson. The process starts with people like you who nominate a person they perceive as a real hero.” From those nominations, the Richardson Real Heroes board chooses three to five individuals that are honored as this year’s Richardson Real Heroes. Although all of the nominees were “heroes” even before they were nominated, the Board chose four Real Heroes for recognition in 2016.
Barb Gatti has left her volunteer fingerprints all over Richardson, but was nominated by The Warren Center specifically for her work there.Among her activities at The Warren Center, she hosts the Taste of Eastside fund raiser every year and is a major helper with auction items, tickets and other operations for Fantasy Football, The Warren Center’s major fund raiser. She also recruits companies and individuals to collect toys for the Center’s Toy Drive. This year, Barb chaired a new fundraiser, High Tea at the Chocolate Angel, which brought new donors and friends to The Warren Center.Warren Center staff say they are constantly receiving phone calls and emails from new friends and donors that say, “Barb suggested I contact The Warren Center.”The Warren Center’s mission is to assure that children with developmental differences or disabilities, and their families, receive the resources and support they need to reach their full potential.Barb also serves on the boards of the Richardson Chamber of Commerce and Animal Luv and volunteers with numerous Richardson nonprofits including Berkner Park, NETWORK of Community Ministries, Metrocrest Food Bank, Carter BloodCare, the Eisemann Center, Richardson Boys & Girls Club and the Methodist Richardson Hospital Foundation.Barb was instrumental in organizing the Round Up at Reunion Title which collected more 10,000 pounds of food for the NETWORK.
Margie Golden started her volunteer career at NETWORK of Community Ministries in 1985 when NETWORK first opened its doors.She has spent more than 500 hours each year working in the various departments, ranging from the food room to interviewing clients.She is a founding member and President of Women in NETWORK (WIN), an auxiliary of NETWORK. WIN raises funds to support several NETWORK programs including Toyland Express, Backpacks for Richardson and Richardson ISD children, Big Meals for Little Kids and dental supplies for city and Richardson ISD children. She was the creator and power behind WIN’s “High Tea for Tots,” a successful fund raiser for WIN’s programs.Those
efforts in WIN add more than 350 additional hours each year as a volunteer,
giving Margie more than 850 hours annually devoted to NETWORK. Margie also has
made generous financial donations to NETWORK, particularly when shortfalls
appeared in programs supported by WIN.Margie enjoys working with people of all ages and will go the extra mile to make sure their needs are met. While performing the essential but delicate task of interviewing NETWORK clients, she has displayed that caring heart while at the same time setting boundaries where appropriate.Margie
has a caring sense of humor, and people in all walks of life enjoy her company
when she is assisting with the community and its citizens.
Through Richardson Volunteers in Police Service (VIPS), Marty has contributed 7,462 hours in the past 11 years. 2015 was his fifth consecutive year to exceed 1,000 hours.As a uniformed VIPS Field Operations Volunteer, Marty supports first responders with traffic control at accident scenes and citywide events, such as parades, the Cottonwood Art and Wildflower festivals, and by performing house watches for residents. During the past Thanksgiving holiday, Marty did 28 house checks in one day alone to ensure the security of homes with traveling families.He also assumes other time-consuming tasks that allows better use of paid law enforcement personnel time. As an example, Marty and a volunteer partner used license plate technology to locate a wanted person for DFW Airport police, leading to an arrest, and to locate a person reported missing so that the Richardson Police Department could confirm her safety.As a Volunteer instructor, Marty oversees certifications and maintains more than 200 pages of procedures for the Richardson PD, updating them as necessary. He has used his law background to research insurance liability for volunteers.Dedicated to education, Marty has chaired the Scholarship Committee for the Richardson Citizen Police Academy Alumni Association, which awarded $6,000 in scholarships in 2015. In addition to his Police Department hours, Marty also volunteers more than 100 hours annually with First Richardson Helpers through First United Methodist Church, a resource for seniors with basic home maintenance needs.
Carol migrated to Texas via Mississippi and Louisiana. As a graduate of Mississippi State University with degrees in math and computer science, she took her skills to work at Electrospace, E-Systems and Raytheon.
Carol began her volunteer service with the Eisemann Center 13 ½ years ago, before the facility was finished. She helped the administrative department as one of the volunteer receptionists during construction, a period staff members lovingly call their “trailer days” before the Center’s opening. The Eisemann Center staff estimates Carol has almost 7,000 volunteer hours split between administrative work and ushering at events.
The Eisemann Center has used her administrative and computer skills with several special assignments and projects. For a few years, she assisted House Management in training new ushers joining the Eisemann Center’s volunteer program. For the past three years she has used her computer skills to enhance the flow of client data, designing a program to provide trend analyses to management. She was one of the inaugural participants in the “Friends of the Eisemann Center,” a donor program. Carol assisted a local scout in earning his Eagle through a project at the Eisemann Center. Together, the pair renovated, reorganized and updated the Eisemann Center’s Archive Room, a space that had been neglected over the years.
Carol has also volunteered during the past 12 years with the Richardson Police Department’s Neighborhood Crime Watch Patrol and The Dallas Opera, transporting guest artists to and from DFW airport and assisting them if needed while they are in town.