I wish the USO was an organization I could believe in. Had I known that the CEO made $400,000, I would have never started volunteering. No wonder they rely on volunteers for everything.
In the future I will be careful of the word Non-Profit. The only one not making a profit is the volunteer.
I am a Volunteer that has worked in my local USO Center for the past eight months. I average approximatley 32 hours per month, and most of it is working from 8 pm to 4 am. I will be leaving the end of this year, and here's why.....
I recently was honored by being part of a select group of some 26 volunteers to honor and welcome Wounded Warriors. The new CEO, John Pray, was on that plane when it arrived. This new CEO walked off the plane and gave many of us the impression that he was a Wall Street Banker, "too good" to acknowledge the efforts of the Volunteers. He did not greet any of us, let alone introduce himself, and thank us for our Volunteer service.
Later, he told the Center Director, "You got a good group of people here." Lip service, and certainly, not a demonstration of leadship, or inspiration to those who give their time.
I not only agree that the CEO pay to run a charity with a "golden name and reputation" is out of line, but also the above market pay going to the rest of the staff that is arrogant and condescending is wrong.
I am resigning when my commitment is over this December, and will instead volunteer for a charity where the directors are paid a fair maket wage, and where I can see that my efforts and contributions go to benefit recipients as much as possible.
Also, please note they constantly hit up the USO Volunteers, many, seniors on a fixed income, for donations all the time.
Someone needs to audit this place, and return it to the goals of its founders.
I'm former military, and a volunteer with USO's Dallas-Ft Worth Airport"Send Off" program, which works with troops returning to Afghanistan from R&R, every day. I'm one of seven volunteers on the Thursday shift, and we typically have about 100 - 200 outbound troops on a flight. The money donated to the USO enables us to have light snacks (chips, pretzels, candy bars, jerky, peanuts, gum etc.) and cold bottled water for the troops, and a cart of aspirin, bandaids, chapstick, eyedrops, shaving and cleanup supplies, etc. at the departure point. We also dispense donate books, magazines, and USO "Care Packages". Of our seven team members, the three men are all veterans, including a WW II infantryman (Battle of the Bulge), a Korean War veteran, and a Vietnam veteran. All four of the women are either married to veterans, or are widows of the veterans. We love our work as volunteers, and welcome the opportunity to work with these great troops and the families that come to see them off. We believe that the heart of the USO is with and for the troops; and that the number of volunteers far, far exceeds the paid staff. All of us, although not paid, actively financially support the USO because we are on the spot, and we see what is done for the troops and how much the USO is appreciated by them and their families. In short, it's a CALLING, and we believe our contributions help our soldiers, Marines, sailors, and airmen/women. We love the USO because we love the troops. God bless them, every one!