This week say goodbye to our much loved coworker Lisa Tignor. Lisa has been part of the Volunteer West Virginia for 18 years! As sad as we are to see her go, we are happy she is following her dreams. Lisa's early retirement gives her much needed time to complete her novels, movies, and screenplays. Lisa's future is bright! We can't wait to see what her next chapter brings.
In this month's blog, Lisa looks back on her time at Volunteer West Virginia and says goodbye -
For the last twenty or so years at Volunteer West Virginia, I have worked with people in the most remote and poverty-stricken areas imaginable. Those people are the reason I believe in the power of volunteerism.
Whew! Take a deep breath! Get ready for news.
I am leaving Volunteer West Virginia and that means there is still some unfinished worked when it comes to answers about barriers to volunteering. We have done a lot of work collecting this information over the last few years. I wish we had more answers. I wish that instead of putting a band-aid on the symptoms of poverty, we could strike out at the geographical isolation and decades of poor education that have led us here, making an organization like Volunteer West Virginia (and so many others) necessary. I wish we could level the playing field where could be virtually connected, if not face to face. Perhaps the broadband project will help with that issue. I wish we knew how to provide stepping stones to equality to those who were unfortunate enough to have been born with too many strikes against them. For now, volunteerism and service is the best stepping stone we have.
About a year ago, I sent out a survey to many friends, acquaintances, and colleagues to ask about success and how they got there. A consistent theme in replies was "to get out of your comfort zone." Being very much like the character Sheldon Cooper on “Big Bang Theory”, I fought this idea for a long time. "Why would I want to do that? It’s called a comfort zone for a reason." I was raised to think the comfort zone is where you want to be. But only if it is a financial comfort zone. This belief didn’t seem to take into consideration the effects on health and happiness. Now, I’m finally taking that leap and trying to have faith that the next step is there.
For a while, at least, I’ll be focused on creative projects and how to monetize them. In preparing for the leap, I’ve completed two first drafts of novels that are now in the first edit. I also have a number of finished screenplays for which I have plans.
(Competition or production.) I also have a number of unfinished screenplays that I don’t have plans for (mostly because they aren’t finished.) I also have an almost completed film that was halted mid-production due to COVID-19. I’ll get back to it. One thing I keep hearing about myself is that I am persistent and don’t leave anything unfinished.
I’m also working on marketing plans, with the help of many of you. THANK YOU! For so long I didn’t have the confidence or faith or devote myself full time to this effort. But having written as much as I have in my "down" time," I have the discipline and I have the talent. Faith is harder. I am going to look at my awards every day and lean on them heavily to remind me that I have external validation of my talent.
My last day at Volunteer West Virginia is October 23. There are several of you I’d love to work with on projects, when we find the right fit. I am still available to make promotional videos for nonprofits through Appalachian Video Productions. It just won’t be for free anymore. Sadly, I won’t be doing the television show or the podcast anymore. But it’s been five great years on the show!
Adios, au revoir, wiedersehen, goodbye.