Tom Devine, executive director of Serve Wisconsin, was recently announced as the 2015 Outstanding Commission Executive Director as part of the 2015 Innovation and Leadership Awards at the America’s Service Commissions Annual Reception in Arlington, VA.
Devine has served as executive director of Serve Wisconsin, the state service commission in Wisconsin administering AmeriCorps State funds, for 17 years. Prior to Serve Wisconsin, Devine was with Operation Fresh Start for 20 years, and has previously served on local school boards.
“Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Milwaukee has developed some exceptional programming, with the service of AmeriCorps members, since 2006,” said Pat Marcus, director of program development for early childhood education at Boys and Girls Club of Greater Milwaukee. “In 2014, we were encouraged to develop new and different programs. Tom challenges us, continually, to be better at what we do to improve the lives of the children we serve.”
Tom believes in the power of collaboration and has taken the lead, multiple times, to facilitate bringing opportunities for collaboration to AmeriCorps programs and their partners. One example of this was his organizing meetings between leadership in Milwaukee Public Schools and program directors who had AmeriCorps members serving MPS. Tom devised a spreadsheet showing how many members were serving, and where, to illustrate where overlap occurred and there was potential for collaboration.
Recognizing the value of collaboration, he has been engaged in ASC and can often be found on the phone with other commission directors and CNCS staff providing his opinions, guidance, and experience. For 17 years he’s navigated the ever changing grant landscape and provided funding foresight to ensure that Wisconsin, year after year, receives the resources needed to strengthen communities and increase volunteerism. Tom is a passionate and determined leader who is always willing to stand up for what he believes is right.
“We’re pleased to present Tom Devine with this honor,” said Kaira Esgate, CEO of America’s Service Commissions. “He is an ardent advocate for national service, and plays a critical role in advancing volunteer strategies and securing AmeriCorps resources to support communities throughout Wisconsin.”