Now, two or three Friday nights a month, I charge a pile of lithium ion batteries and put them with the Bosch impact driver and drill, a set of spade bits, a circular saw, a reciprocating saw (with extra blades) all in a tool bag. Then I put tool bag and an open tool tote (with miscellaneous hand tools, work gloves and boxes of drill and driver bits) all in the trunk of my car. In the long narrow space that is left, I put my tool belt – but only after going through it and making sure it is organized properly and the carpenter’s pencils don’t need sharpening.
It’s likely that I’m the only single, female financial services executive in my city that goes through this ritual. This is the story of how I went from spending my “fun” money on clothes, shoes, books and electronics to buying power tools and spending some of my Saturdays helping change lives.
That fall of 2014, I was at my office and received an email from the office’s community service community about my employer’s annual “wheelchair ramp build.” I’d never built anything, but the email said no experience was required. I’d get to meet more of the over 500 people in the office and it would look good on my first annual review. So I signed up.