Founder of the Wolohan Lumber Company and the Wolohan Family Foundation, Richard V. (Dick) Wolohan, was committed to improving his community and helping people. He served on the boards and committees of numerous nonprofit organizations, including the SVSU Board of Fellows, leading to his recognition with an honorary Doctor of Law Degree in 1985. He also provided years of guidance and counsel to Nouvel Catholic Central High School as an honorary chairman of their leadership circle.
The company and the Wolohan Family Foundation established a scholarship fund in 1995, and though Dick passed away in 2010, this program that grew into the Richard V. Wolohan Fellowship in Leadership and Service continues his legacy, encouraging students to demonstrate the kind of community leadership that characterized his life. In addition to receiving scholarship support, Wolohan Fellows participate in leadership development and service projects to improve their communities.
The Fellows’ current project will assist Saginaw’s Underground Railroad, an organization that provides shelter and support for survivors of domestic violence. Savannah Bruske, a Nouvel graduate and current Wolohan Fellow, brings a long history of volunteer experience to her leadership role in the group’s project of making renovations to the organization’s facility and conducting a supply drive to help the individuals they serve.
“Our goal is to make it a more welcoming and inviting space for guests. We also plan to spruce up their outdoor area, so guests can feel as comfortable as possible when spending time outside.” Beyond the obvious advantages to upgrading facilities, Savannah sees a greater purpose. “This project is meaningful to the group because we all believe that the guests of Underground Railroad deserve to feel safe and comfortable at all times. We are excited to hopefully make them feel more at home during their stay at the Underground Railroad.”
The group will also be collecting necessities like cleaning and laundry supplies, since many past guests of the Underground Railroad still need assistance with obtaining basic household products. “We hope to ensure that these individuals have access to the resources that they need, even if shelter may not be one of those needs at the moment,” Savannah explained. “I believe I speak for the group when I say that we are excited to complete this project and see how it impacts the lives of guests of the Underground Railroad!”
We appreciate Dick Wolohan’s vision and the Wolohan family’s continued generosity in helping the Fellows grow into the caring community leaders they are becoming.
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