The young professionals of Generation Dayton are on a mission to “Get Out and Give Back.” Networking and professional development is very much a part of their organization, but a key element is community service. That’s why the members make visiting Community Blood Center’s Dayton Donor Center an annual pilgrimage.
First to donate among the GenDayton after-work crowd Wednesday, Nov. 6 was Andy Wendeln, a civilian engineer at Wright Patterson Air Force Base who made his 60th lifetime donation. Andy was dressed in his red UD shorts, long sleeve t-shirt and red knee socks, ready to hit the road to Rotary Park for an intramural league kickball game. “I’ll probably end up pitching and coaching first base,” he said about his quick turn-around to exercise after donating. “I’ve done it before – I’ll be OK!”
Andy is a good example of the energy in the GenDayton ranks, whose membership is targeted in the 21-to-40 age range. Dayton Area Chamber of Commerce Business Programming Manager LaDonna Wulfeck says it’s been a productive year for the group. “Our membership is between 225 and 300 and we keep that pretty consistently,” she said. She pointed to the hard work members put in doing community service during Generation Dayton Day 2013. “We had 160 volunteers doing 620 hours of community service for an economic impact of $14,500 on the city,” she said.
Mark Evans, a young employee of TW Telecom, couldn’t wait to get busy with the organization by donating during the CBC visit. “I’m a new member of GenDayton in just the past week,” he said. “My company is involved with the Dayton Area Chamber and I worked with them and was looking for an area to get more involved. I’ve donated blood over the years, but hadn’t gotten over lately to do it. When I got with GenDayton last week I saw it (CBC visit) coming up on their events, and I said, ‘Perfect!’”