Diane Shelton

Diane Shelton

Diane Shelton works as a marketing professional. She has been with DPR since 1999. With a degree in journalism, if she wasn’t doing this, she would be a war correspondent for the Associated Press.

Posts: 111
Location: Austin, Texas
Favorite hobby: Riding my bike
Hometown: Berkeley, CA
Favorite book: Where I’m Calling From by Raymond Carver
Posts In: Communities

October 28, 2013

DPR Volunteers the Key to Success for Annual Golf Tournaments

Two organizations supported by the DPR Foundation are set to receive an estimated $67,000 thanks to a pair of golf tournaments held in October in Atlanta and Sacramento.

First up was the “DPR Golf Invitational Benefitting Roberts Family Development Center (RFDC),” held Oct. 7. Building on the success of last year’s inaugural event, DPR increased its involvement from a major sponsorship level to hosting this year’s tournament for the Sacramento-based organization. According to DPR’s Sandi Graham, who serves as the Foundation liaison for the Sacramento office, this year’s event brought in more than $37,000 for RFDC.

Within DPR’s Sacramento office, a committee of eight, including Graham and the office’s Regional Manager Mark Cirksena, spearheaded the tournament effort. Graham said the committee’s meetings started on a monthly basis in April, but kicked into high gear as the tournament’s date drew closer. Aside from booking the venue – the event was once again held at the Morgan Creek Golf Course in Roseville, CA – the committee was responsible for soliciting sponsors and players, organizing the closing dinner and various raffles and golf challenges, and ensuring the day ran smoothly.

On tournament day, 26 volunteers – nearly a quarter of the Sacramento office’s 96 employees – attended the event, helping with everything from registration to raffle sales to aiding golfers on the course. In total, DPR employees contributed an estimated 300 volunteer hours planning and hosting the event. The dedication of the volunteers, which also included RFDC staff and supporters, made for a great tournament, according to Graham.

Following a day of golf, games and mulligans, including two hole-in-one opportunities and chipping and putting challenges, attendees were treated to dinner at the club, where they were shown a video introducing them to the work of RFDC. Sacramento City Councilman Allen Warren, who represents northern Sacramento’s District 2, attended the event. The sponsors secured by DPR this year included architects, engineering firms, subcontractors, suppliers and RFDC supporters.

The next day, on Oct. 8, DPR’s Atlanta office, now known as DPR Hardin, hosted its 8th annual “Building Great Things Golf Tournament” at the River Club in Suwanee, GA. Drawing a record 27 sponsors, this year’s event netted an estimated total of $30,000 in sponsorships, raffle tickets and mulligans for the Brookhaven Boys & Girls Club, part of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Atlanta (BGCMA). This is the fourth year the event benefitted the club, which is one of 15 organizations supported by the DPR Foundation.

Andi King Wieczynski, who acts as a liaison between the club and DPR Hardin, said that a full fourth of the Atlanta office – 30 of its 120 employees – volunteered in some capacity to make the tournament a success. Even with its long track record, the event still requires a lot of planning, Wieczynski said, noting that about one half of this year’s sponsors were from previous years; the rest were new sponsors solicited by DPR Hardin project managers and project executives. In addition, Wieczynski relies on Steve Bartkowski, a DPR Hardin employee and former Atlanta Falcons quarterback, to help acquire the raffle prizes, as well as pose for pictures at the 17th hole.

The money raised through sponsorships covered the Atlanta event’s green and cart fees, dinner, reception, and prizes. Additionally, DPR Hardin volunteers secured A Printers Inc. as this year’s Bloody Mary Bar sponsor and The Color Spot as the Signage sponsor. Wieczynski added that the River Club provided the greens at a reduced fee and donated a foursome to the raffle.

Once again, kids from BGCMA joined the Atlanta event for the check presentation and pictures. This year, 10 kids from the George Washington Carver Club, which is in the same network of clubs as the Foundation-supported Brookhaven, were shuttled to the River Club. Sixteen-year-old Sir Dalvin Holloman, a candidate for the BGCMA “Youth of the Year” award, addressed the group during the tournament dinner.

Supported by DPR’s Sacramento office, the Roberts Family Development Center (RFDC) provides services in the Sacramento community. With a holistic approach focusing on early childhood and family education, economic empowerment and technology, RFDC’s goal is to nurture personal growth, strengthen families, and enhance community development and civic involvement. Since December 2008, the DPR Foundation has supported the center with grants totaling $190,000.

Supported by DPR’s Atlanta office, the Brookhaven Boys & Girls Club, part of Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Atlanta (BGCMA), promises to provide a quality developmental program that empowers metro Atlanta youth, especially those from disadvantaged circumstances, to become productive adults. Since December 2008, the DPR Foundation has supported the club with grants totaling $265,000. In February, BGCMA named DPR Construction its “County Corporate Partner of the Year” for its ongoing financial support as well as its dedication to hands-on volunteering at the Brookhaven Boys & Girls Club.

October 5, 2013

DPR Hosts Events to “Mentor the Mentors” in Maryland

DPR’s Washington, DC, office spent the past few months providing the kids enrolled in the Maryland Multicultural Youth Center (MMYC) summer program with new and different experiences – from introducing them to Indian cuisine during a series of international presentations to hosting a series of sports clinics to whisking them away to the Chesapeake Bay for a camping weekend. In late August, the office decided to turn its attention to the team of AmeriCorps members who work at MMYC and help keep its tutoring program running smoothly throughout the year.

“The initiative – dubbed ‘mentoring the mentors’ – is a way to recognize MMYC staff who commit so much of their time and energy to leading the youth at MMYC,” said Jenn Bollenbacher, a marketing coordinator in DPR’s DC office.

Bollenbacher was among six DPR employees who organized and led two activities for the AmeriCorps members and MMYC staff. On Aug. 23, she, along with DPR’s Henry Ashton, Tim Maffett and Dan Crutchfield, brought a group of 14 AmeriCorps members to Torrid Paintball Sports in Clarksburg, MD, for a friendly battle on the outdoor field course.

A day earlier, the group was invited to Earth Treks’ Climbing Center in Rockville, MD, by DPR’s Information Technology Capability Lead, Bill McCracken, and Mike Kessler, a project manager, both whom have been climbing for more than 20 years. There, the group was treated to two hours of instructions, warm up and rock climbing, capped off by pizza for lunch.

According to Dianna Petitt, the DPR Foundation liaison for the Washington, DC, office, the events were paid for with discretionary funds provided to the office by the DPR Foundation in 2012 to help raise volunteerism within DPR and provide extra support to the designated organizations.

“There is a synergy when you take dedicated, motivated people, such as the AmeriCorps members, and pair them in an activity with successful people in the workforce,” Petitt said. “By using these discretionary funds, we hope to get more people from DPR involved while focusing on the people who do so much for MMYC.”

Both McCracken and Bollenbacher said the events were met with enthusiasm and appreciation from the AmeriCorps members. According to McCracken, the rock climbing event was such a success that they hope to repeat it for the AmeriCorps team and possibly host a similar event for the MMYC kids in 2014.

“We definitely plan on organizing more events like these in the future. Part of our 2014 planning process is to include activities geared toward developing the MMYC team,” Bollenbacher said.

McCracken added that he and Kessler originally met in a rock climbing facility in the 1990s and have been long looking for a way to introduce the activity to the DPR Foundation’s slate of events.

That thinking aligns perfectly with these types of mentor events, according to Bollenbacher. “I hope it also showed other employees that the DPR Foundation is able to support any type of engagement they want – it can be athletic like paintball or rock climbing, or it can be academic, artistic, historical, etc. We want our employees to know that the foundation cares about getting them involved in any way they want to be.”

MMYC, which provides educational support/tutoring, cultural enrichment, nutrition, summer programs and physical activities to middle school youth, is a member of the Latin American Youth Center (LAYC) family of organizations. LAYC is a multicultural, regionally based organization whose mission is “to support youth and their families to live, work, and study with dignity, hope, and joy.” Founded in 1968, LAYC was incorporated as a nonprofit in 1974 for the purpose of serving “at-risk” immigrant Latino youth. Since its inception, the agency has grown from a small grassroots recreation center serving primarily for Latino youth to a nationally recognized organization with a broader focus encompassing all youth and families across the District of Columbia and Prince George’s and Montgomery counties in Maryland.

The Maryland Multicultural Youth Center is one of 15 youth organizations nationally awarded a total of $845,000 in grants by the DPR Foundation in December 2012. To date, the DPR Foundation has supported MMYC with grants totaling $285,000. In addition to participating in the summer program, DPR employees provide support and first aid/CPR and other training throughout the school year.

September 30, 2013

Kids’ Bikes Back on the Road Thanks to DPR Volunteer Efforts in Nor Cal

More than 180 bicycles were returned to road-ready condition thanks to a pair of recent bike repair clinics held in Northern California in conjunction with the DPR Foundation-supported TurningWheels for Kids (TWFK).

On Aug. 17, for the third year in a row, volunteers from DPR’s San Jose office hosted a free bike repair clinic in the office’s parking lot. Working under canopies and fueled by hot dogs provided by DPR, 15 volunteers and their families fixed 102 bicycles for community youth. The four-hour event had kids lining up for the clinic, bike maintenance tips and barbecue.

DPR’s Phil Bartkowski, who sits on the TWFK board of directors along with DPR San Jose Regional Manager Scott Greubel, noted that the San Jose event is quickly becoming one of the most popular for the organization, which is dedicated to providing bicycles for underprivileged children in the local community. “The bike repair clinic at DPR San Jose consistently draws the biggest crowds of any of the repair clinics. We have a really tight community right around our office,” Bartkowski said.

As in past years, a master mechanic attended the clinic to address the most serious repairs. DPR volunteers are trained through a primer class created by Bartkowski to help them remedy simpler problems, like changing tires or inner tubes and replacing seats.

A few weeks later, on Sept. 7, Bartkowski was among a handful of DPR San Jose volunteers who joined the San Jose Fire Department in a second bike repair clinic, held at the Moose Lodge in San Jose. That event resulted in more than 80 bicycles being repaired for area kids.

Founded in 2003, TWFK is a dynamic program that provides new bicycles for underprivileged children in the local community. The goal of TWFK is to entice children back outdoors, away from TV, computers and snacking, and reintroduce outdoor activity and play. Additionally, TWFK strives to provide a bit of joy to children from low-income families, who are all too familiar with the pressures of living in an environment of uncertainty and often chaos. Each year TWFK works diligently to collect funds, purchase and assemble bikes and then distribute them to worthy, established children’s charities for their holiday giving programs.

TurningWheels for Kids is one of 15 youth organizations nationally awarded a total of $845,000 in grants by the DPR Foundation in December 2012. Since 2008, the DPR Foundation has supported TWFK with grants totaling $138,000. Its 2012 grant of $60,000 represents the organization’s single largest donation to date. Additionally, DPR served as the title sponsor for the 2011 and 2012 Big Bike Build, the organization’s signature event.

September 10, 2013

Future for KIDS Fantasy Football League Kicks off in Phoenix

The Future for KIDS’ Winter Games Sports Camp will again be a reality thanks to the second annual DPR-hosted fantasy football league, which kicked off Aug. 29 with a draft party at DPR’s net-zero energy office in Phoenix.

This year’s competition was limited to one league featuring 10 teams, including last year’s winner, Kovach Building Enclosures. All the participating teams were invited to the draft party, where they watched a video about last year’s camp event, played ladder golf and other games, and were treated to food from the DPR grill and beverages from the DPR wine bar. An auction was also held, featuring Arizona Cardinals tickets and memorabilia, an Arizona State University (ASU) football ticket package, and a luxury hotel stay at the Montelucia Resort & Spa – all procured by the Future for KIDS junior board.

The 2013 draft party and raffle yielded $9,000 for the camp, enough to accommodate 200 kids at the 2014 Winter Games event, up from approximately 150 this year. Held Jan. 12 at Phoenix’s Cesar Chavez Community School, where Future for KIDS also provides after-school mentorship, the 2013 Winter Games Sports Camp was funded entirely by last year’s fantasy football league. According to DPR’s Tim Hyde, who sits on the Future for KIDS board of directors, though the organization previously held multiple camps, in recent years budget concerns had limited it to just one camp, the popular Youth Sports & Fitness Camp held on the ASU campus. The funds raised by the fantasy football league, initially conceived by DPR’s Ryan Young, allowed the organization to reintroduce an additional camp and develop the new Winter Games event.

Hyde said the league operates through ESPN.com and runs though the 16th game of the regular NFL season. The season concludes with a party at Marley’s Sports Bar and Grill in Scottsdale, AZ, where the winning team will be awarded the league’s traveling trophy. This year’s teams are DPR Construction, NFL Legends, Wholesale Floors LLC, Saguaro Steel, Kovach Building Enclosures, Carter’s Landscaping, Kearney Electric, WD Manor Mechanical, Dickens Quality Demolition, LLC, and Eagle Adjusting.

Since 2010, the DPR Foundation has supported Scottsdale, AZ-based Future for KIDS, which is dedicated to providing at-risk children education through mentorship and sports and fitness programs. The 2012 grant of $50,000 brings the three-year total to $95,000. DPR’s Phoenix office also plays a key role in the organization’s Youth Sports & Fitness Camp, held each June, and has raised additional funds for the organization through its annual golf tournament.

September 10, 2013

Girls Inc. Introduced to Green Building Principles by DPR So Cal Volunteers

Proving that kids are never too young to learn about material recycling and reuse, volunteers from DPR’s Newport Beach, CA, office recently hosted a group from the Foundation-supported Girls Inc. of Orange County for the fifth annual Generation Reduce Reuse Recycle (GenR3) green children’s program.

Held Aug. 2 at the organization’s Youth and Family Center in Costa Mesa, CA, the event introduced a group of 40 girls, ranging from third to sixth grade, to concepts related to sustainable building and environmental responsibility. Coordinated by Laura Lawson, DPR’s regional green leader for Southern California, the event spanned nearly three hours and drew a dozen DPR volunteers, plus DPR’s summer extern from Girls Inc., Briseida Miranda. GenR3 was planned as part of the Girls Inc. summer program’s two-week theme focusing on “Careers, Future and College.”

Following brief introductions from the DPR volunteers and an interactive green building overview from Lawson, the girls were broken into teams and tasked with brainstorming and designing their own green classrooms. The teams then constructed classroom models using recycled materials such as old foam core presentation boards, compact discs, bottles, egg cartons, berry containers and tile samples, as well as pipe cleaners, modeling clay and popsicle sticks. Guiding the process were the five basic facets of green design, as described by Lawson: site, energy, water, materials and people.

In addition to the emphasis on sustainable building techniques, the volunteers also introduced the girls to their various careers.

“As part of the volunteer introductions, we discussed our roles at DPR so the students think about all the different types of jobs there are out there, even within one company, and what skills are needed for those jobs (math, art, science, etc.),” explained Lawson.

This is the second year DPR volunteers have teamed up with Girls Inc. for the GenR3 event. Following their first GenR3 collaboration in 2012, the organization started its own Girls Restoring Emerging Environmental Needs, or G.R.E.E.N., Club based on the information provided about recycling and sustainable building.

Founded in 1954, Girls Inc. of Orange County positively changes the lives of 4,000 girls ages 4 ½ to 18 each year by providing year-round holistic, compensatory and intentional programming focusing on STEM (science, technology, engineering and math). Its mission is to inspire all girls to be strong, smart and bold.

Girls Inc. of Orange County is one of 15 youth organizations nationally awarded a total of $845,000 in grants by the DPR Foundation in December 2012. Over the past five years, the Foundation has awarded more than $2.4 million to 21 different organizations focused on providing community support to grade school and high school-aged children.

May 18, 2013

Second Annual StandUp for Kids Bowling Outing a Success

April 28 could have been just another typical San Diego Sunday, but for the homeless and at-risk youth of StandUp for Kids, it was anything but. On April 26, StandUp for Kids kicked off its annual 48-hour event, during which the drop-in center stays open for 48 hours straight and participating kids are provided with a variety of social outings, as well as the rare opportunity to spend the night at the center.

For the second year in a row, volunteers from DPR’s San Diego office hosted a bowling outing as part of the 48-hour event. This year, they met the morning of April 28 and walked with the kids, about 20 in total, to the East Village Tavern+Bowl, where they spent a few hours bowling and socializing. Both bowling outings were a huge success, according to Ian Pyka, who serves as DPR’s San Diego representative for the DPR Foundation. Pyka, who was one of about 10 DPR volunteers to attend the event, added that something as simple as a couple of hours of carefree bowling means a lot to the kids, whose young lives have already been marked by adversity.

StandUp For Kids is a nonprofit organization that provides assistance to homeless and at-risk youth throughout San Diego County. The organization’s two San Diego County outreach centers provide homeless children a safe environment and a wide range of services such as food, clothing, hygiene products, educational assistance, counseling and job referrals. Additionally, the nonprofit offers assistance to youth through street outreaches and educational programs in elementary and middle school classrooms. Founded in 1990, the Atlanta-based organization has programs in a number of states and is run almost entirely by volunteers.

February 18, 2013

DPR Construction Named “County Corporate Partner or the Year” by Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Atlanta

The Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Atlanta (BGCMA) has named DPR Construction its “County Corporate Partner of the Year.” The award, presented Feb. 21, recognizes DPR for its ongoing financial support as well as its dedication to hands-on volunteering at the Brookhaven Boys & Girls Club, one of 24 clubs operated by BGCMA.

According to DPR’s Andi King Wieczynski, who was on hand along with Brian Oliver, Kevin Murphy and Jennifer Bollenbacher to receive the award, DPR was selected because its financial support and volunteer hours to one specific club exceed those of any other corporate partner across BGCMA’s 10-county region. Furthermore, the DPR staff who volunteer have been consistent over a long period of time, helping to foster a family-like atmosphere between DPR and the club. The ceremony was held at the BGCMA’s Warren Center in Atlanta, which underwent a renovation and addition in 2011 with DPR as the contractor.

The DPR Foundation’s support of the Brookhaven Boys & Girls Club dates back to 2008 when the club was selected to receive its first grant of $40,000. The Foundation’s most recent grant of $65,000, presented in January, is designated for the club’s Healthy Habits Program as well as the Power Hour homework program, which provides members ages 6 to 18 with the daily support, resources and guidance they need to complete their schoolwork and maintain a sense of educational confidence and ability.

To further strengthen its relationship with the club, DPR Atlanta has outlined two volunteer goals for the coming year: 10 DPR Atlanta employees will stand out as dedicated volunteers who will either continue or start to support the Power Hour, and total DPR volunteer hours in 2013 will surpass 150 hours. Wieczynski added that DPR Atlanta plans to develop more programs like “DPR Green Day.” Held last June, the Green Day event gave more than 100 children enrolled in Brookhaven’s Summer Camp Program the opportunity to learn about sustainability through six activity stations.

To date, the DPR Foundation has supported the Brookhaven Boys & Girls Club with grants totaling $265,000. The club is one of 15 youth organizations nationally awarded a total of $845,000 in grants by the DPR Foundation in December 2012. In addition, DPR Atlanta continues to raise additional support for the club through its annual golf tournament. The 2012 “Building Great Things” Golf Tournament, held October 9, raised $21,500 in foursomes plus an additional $5,000 in mulligans and raffle tickets for the club.

January 5, 2013

DPR Foundation Presents John Avery Boys & Girls Club of Durham with Grant

On Dec. 14, DPR Construction teamed up with the John Avery Boys & Girls Club of Durham (JABGC) to co-host the organization’s board of directors, club members and their families, and volunteers for a “Christmas Party with a Twist.” The event provided the DPR Foundation, which supports youth organizations around the country, with the opportunity to present JABGC with a 2012 grant of $60,000. An additional $10,000 in discretionary funds are available to be disbursed to JABGC by the Foundation in 2013.

DPR’s Mindy Gray, who sits on the JABGC board of directors, attended the event, which featured Santa Claus providing bicycles and other gifts to underprivileged children. The club, according to Gray, is the only one of its kind serving Durham County’s 31,000 school-aged children, of which 60 percent live at or below the poverty level. “The need to support the John Avery Boys & Girls Club is great and never-ending,” Gray said. “By giving financial support to the John Avery Boys & Girls Club, we are helping give children the resources to succeed in education, flourish in life and becoming responsible citizens.”

JABGC works with youth from disadvantaged economic, social and family circumstances. It serves more than 780 youth annually and provides its members with results-oriented programming, which is centered on academic success, healthy lifestyles and character. The club’s programs include mentoring, homework assistance, athletics, health and wellness, character development, the arts, and career-launch services. The club aims to serve youth when they are most vulnerable to negative influences: after school and during summer break.

In addition to the Foundation grants, employees in DPR’s Raleigh-Durham office provide volunteer support throughout the year. For example, five employees, including Gray who served as chair, sat on the organization’s golf committee for the annual “Golf Fore Kids” tournament, held in July. Additionally, by reaching out to subcontractors, a group of DPR volunteers raised $40,000 – more than half of the tournament’s grand total of $70,000 – and several DPR employees pitched in on the day of the event.

December 16, 2012

“Building Great Things” Golf Tournament Raises $30,000 for McLane Children’s Hospital

Representatives from DPR’s Building Great Things golf tournament presented a check for $30,000 to McLane Children’s Hospital in Temple, TX on Dec. 14. The tournament was co-sponsored by Walker Engineering, Dynamic Systems, Prism Electric and Schmidt Electric. The tournament, which sells out quickly every year, is hosted by DPR’s Austin, TX office. In the past 12 years, the tournament has raised more than $250,000 for Central Texas organizations that support underserved youth.

DPR's Mike Martin and Chase Navarro presented the check. McLane Children’s Dr. John Boyd, CEO and CMO, and Ellen Hansen, RN, Chief Nursing Officer, were on hand to accept the check.

August 22, 2012

CLRMC Steel Signing Ceremony Held in Webster, TX

Celebrating both the construction of the new Women’s & Children’s Center and the 40th anniversary of the hospital, Clear Lake Regional Medical Center (CLRMC) held a steel signing ceremony on Tuesday in Webster, Texas. The ceremony was attended by DPR, local dignitaries, trustees and honored CLRMC staff members who have been with the hospital since its opening in 1972 as well as those who have been on staff for 20 or more years.

The new med/surge tower portion of the project, which DPR currently has under construction, will initially have three occupied stories with potential to expand to seven, a new ICU, new operating rooms and recovery rooms. Additionally, DPR is performing a six-phase remodel on the existing, adjacent building, which will become the new Women’s Center. Construction is scheduled to be completed in 2013.