To me, volunteering is Paying Forward.
AARP Driver Safety (ADS) volunteer Marn Flicker is a man of many talents, and he puts those skills to work to make his hometown of Grand Rapids, Minnesota a better place to live for all.
Now in his 12th year as an ADS volunteer, Marn began his service as a course instructor in his local AARP District. After great success, Marn was asked to be the District Coordinator the following year. After just three years as the District Coordinator, he was asked to step up to Zone Coordinator where he managed multiple Districts. In a few more years, Marn was asked to be the Deputy State Coordinator and managed the Northern half on the state all while still teaching 10 to 12 Smart Driver courses per year.
In 2016, Marn chose to apply and was selected for a position with the ADS Volunteer Advisory Council, which is his current role.
ADS has more than 4,500 dedicated volunteers covering all 50 states, Washington DC, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. ADS not only aims to help older drivers stay mobile and independent in their own home or apartment for more years, taking the Smart Driver course can sometimes save them money on their auto insurance.
“My volunteer desire likely started in my elementary school years where I wanted to be in the choir and also be a Mass server in our church,” Marn said. “Wanting to help others is what my parents and grandparents did, and I followed in their footsteps.”
After High School, Marn volunteered to join the Air Force where he was trained as a weapons release technician and volunteered to go to Vietnam. Much to his credit, he also volunteered for a second year after completing his first year of service in the country.
Later, Marn chose to be a Volunteer Fire and Rescue Squad member and served 22 years in the community where he lived and worked. He is now a volunteer captain on the Let’s Go Fishing team that takes seniors and physically challenged youth out fishing on a specially-equipped pontoon boat.
“To me, volunteering is paying forward - being there for others in need,” Marn said.
Living in Northern Minnesota and the Land of 10,000 Lakes, Marn’s hobbies include fishing, hunting, four wheeling and snowmobiling.
Marn says his favorite Cabot cheese is Port Wine Spreadable Cheddar, noting that it is delicious on crackers, sandwiches and veggies.
Joining Marn on the cruise is his wife, Marie Flicker.