Erin Martin

Meet the Volunteers

Erin Martin is the Executive Director at MEDICO, a nonprofit that provides healthcare and educational services in developing communities in Central America. Erin attended grad school in New Zealand, where her and her husband Paul had their daughter. Unfortunately their home was severely damaged in the 2011 Christchurch earthquake. They moved back to the U.S. and in with her parents in Bastrop to recover from that loss only to go through the September 2011 fires two weeks later. “We learned the life lesson of ‘stuff is not important’ repeatedly,” said Erin. She was really excited when they finally got back to Austin and got resettled. With 2 years of volunteering with CASA and having worked with 5 children, Erin has learned a lot about the child welfare system. “I guess I had a stereotyped image in my mind of burnt out caseworkers. I realized that everybody at the department really cares about kids. Caseworkers feel as much for kids as anyone else does but they’re truly overstretched. Mostly it’s brought to light how taxed the system is and how CASA has risen up as this additional agency to fill that gap.” Working with CASA, Erin says, “I feel like my volunteerism is inextricably linked with the mission of CASA and the outcome of where these kids end up. It’s really mission critical.”  

Dawn Crane

Meet the Volunteers

Dawn Crane was born in Michigan and raised in Ohio. Being stationed at Fort Hood brought her to Texas over 20 years ago. She has a one child and 3 dogs. Dawn’s an entrepreneur with two small businesses. Read more

Hubert Bell

Meet the Volunteers

When Hubert Bell Jr. "got more sense" and gave up drag racing, he started breeding race horses. When he wanted to make a difference, he became a CASA volunteer. Read more

Kathy & Ben Orgain

Meet the Volunteers

Kathy and Ben Orgain grew up together in Beaumont and started dating after college. They have two sons and a daughter and they both love gardening and traveling. Read more

Elizabeth Newsom

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Elizabeth Newsom may have one of the most fun jobs in Austin. She’s the owner of Sno-Beach Austin, where she worked all through high school and summers during college before buying the business from the previous owners. Read more

Mandeep Chatha

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Mandeep Chatha was born in India and immigrated to the United States at a young age. She was raised mostly in Fort Worth and moved to Austin to attend the University of Texas where she studied Government, Asian-American Studies and Philosophy. Read more

Al Lopez

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Al Lopez spent much of his career as a finance executive with IBM and Dell before running the Economic Growth Business Incubator (EGBI), an organization where he combines his business experience with a community and economic development mission. Read more

Ana Smith-Daley

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Ana Smith-Daley was born in Honduras and moved to Indiana to attend college. Ana subsequently moved to New York and then New Jersey where she graduated from college. Read more

Cheryl Albanese

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Cheryl Albanese was born in Midland and graduated from Texas A&M with a BBA in Management. She has lived in Austin for 21 years and is currently a Realtor with Turnquist Partners. Read more

Elvira Roque

Meet the Volunteers

Elvira Roque has 2 young children, a son and daughter, and loves spending time with them at local parks and museums. Elvira is currently a law student at St. Mary’s University in San Antonio. Read more

Steve Janda

Meet the Volunteers

Steve Janda grew up in rural South Texas and, after graduating from nursing school at UT Galveston, decided to move to Austin where he’s lived ever since. He currently considers himself a full time volunteer. Read more

Will Mazurek

Meet the Volunteers

Will Mazurek has lived in Austin for most of his life, though he has travelled extensively due to having spent 4 years in the Navy. He says that Japan was his favorite place to live and that the people there are incredibly friendly and willing to share their culture. Read more

Barb Kowal

Meet the Volunteers

Barb Kowal grew up in Massachusetts, graduated from Smith College, and spent all her time in New England before moving here in 1997 to work for the University of Texas, "taking my Boston accent with me forever" she says. Read more

Lisa Rosenbaum

Meet the Volunteers

Lisa Rosenbaum has lived in Austin for 21 years. She loves running the trails here in Austin and growing and arranging flowers. This fulfills her nurturing gene now that her two daughters are grown up. Read more

Richard Mattingly

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Richard Mattingly has spent much of his life in the world of education. After growing up in Houston, he headed to Austin to attend the University of Texas and became a high school math teacher. Read more

Don Rhoades

Meet the Volunteers

Don Rhoades and his wife, Dottie, of 29 years have never been able to tear themselves away from Austin. He grew up moving around often and came to Austin to attend UT. He graduated in 1986 and has been here ever since. Read more