Friday Feature: Jeff Raudebaugh

Passion for people
Jeff's story

Your name: Jeff Raudebaugh

Your role at Volunteers of America Michigan: Assistant Program Manager of Health Profession Opportunity Grants (HPOG) Program.

What brought you to this position? I started my journey with Volunteers of America Michigan in the summer of 2016. My wife and I lived in Washington D.C. for eight years, where I worked for a community bank. After the eight years, we went on an epic three-month trip in South America. When we got back to Michigan, we were living with parents and looking for jobs closer to family. I was looking for a role where I could bridge my interest in numbers and finance, with my passion for communicating with people. I have found that here.

What is your biggest takeaway from working with Volunteers of America Michigan? Coming from the private work world, non-profit work is an adjustment. There isn’t always an easy answer to every issue that comes up, however, I’ve learned to keep looking until I find a solution. I realize that the solution I find can really help someone in whatever situation they find themselves in.

What is your biggest challenge in this position? We work with people every day, and people are inspiring and beautiful, but also complicated. What may work for, or drive one person, may not work for another. So it is a challenge finding solutions that work for everyone.

Where is your dream vacation spot? Colombia. The place is beautiful and affordable. The food is great. And the people are very friendly.

What is your favorite book? This is a tough question because so many books have influenced me. But I really liked “The Heart is a Lonely Hunter” by Carson McCullers. The story takes place in a real sleepy southern town and paints a beautiful but tragic picture in your mind. I also loved the “Harry Potter” books by J.K. Rowling. They are so complex and full of magic.

How do you spend your time outside of the office? My wife and I appreciate the arts. We have lots of talented and genuine friends who we are very proud of. We like to take walks or bike rides and explore different spaces, such as parks and neighborhoods. I also play music in a couple bands, one where we play cosmic folk and another which could be considered organic electronic music. I like to have a good time, soak up the sun and squeeze the juice out of life.