C2C Staff Spotlight: 8 Questions with Josh Nespoli

August 5, 2011 at 10:35 am Leave a comment

Josh Nespoli is the Community Outreach Manager at Cradles to Crayons in Boston. In this role he builds and maintains relationships in the community with the goal of developing “Champions” for our cause. He works with the Boston Community Outreach team to develop and implement strategy to increase incoming product donations through community events and large scale initiatives. Josh also manages C2C Boston’s social media. He has been at C2C for 4 years.  He worked as an AmeriCorps*VISTA after graduating from Babson College in 2007 before moving into the role of Community Outreach Manager.

Why did you decide to work at Cradles to Crayons?
I heard there was cake.

Well….that and from the first time I heard about C2C I was intrigued by the organization’s innovation, model and mission.  But when I met the employees and witnessed first-hand the passion they had for their work, I needed to be a part of that.

What is your favorite part of working at Cradles to Crayons?
Working here forces people to be versatile.  Our team can do anything, and problem solving is our specialty.  On any given day we might be using skills in marketing, sales, customer service, logistics or all of the above.  And we always need to be ready for some heavy lifting.

What story about a child we have served has stuck with you most? 
It’s actually the story of a volunteer group that sticks with me most.  A group of 8th graders from an inner city private school.  While working on our puzzle project, they expressed frustration over how many puzzles were no good because of a few missing pieces.  At the end of their shift they asked to take the unusable pieces back to school with them.  Over the course of the next month they used these pieces to create arts and crafts – pins, magnets, picture frames, etc. – and sold them in their community.  On their next visit to C2C they beamed with pride as they handed our staff a check for $1,000 for new games and puzzles.  Social entrepreneurship in its purest form.  Amazing.

Where are you originally from? What do you miss most about your hometown?
Berwick PA.  The greatest small town in the United States. Aside from my family, I miss the rural summers most.  I miss the hours spent on the tractor mowing the field, and the smell of the fresh cut grass.  I miss jumping on some inner tubes and floating down the crick on a lazy Saturday afternoon, and carnival games at night.  There’s nothing quite like enjoying a greasy carnival cheeseburger with the clink of the bottle toss and the clapping of the spin wheel in the background, except maybe the fresh corn on the cob grown right down the street for dinner.  Oh, and warm strawberry shortcake that soaks up milk like a sponge for dessert.  And there’s nothing quite as peaceful as driving up to the grove each weekend, laying out in the beds of our trucks and sleeping under the stars.

What was your favorite book, toy, or outfit as a child?
When I was in 5th grade, I put on a serious hissy fit in Kaufman’s Department Store until I finally convinced my mom to buy me a flannel jacket like my big brother Marc had.  It was five or six sizes too big, but I wore it to school every day that year.  And every year after that – all the way through college.  People in Boston make fun of me, but 15 years later I still wear it every fall.  It’s thread-bare, faded and border line stinky, but it’s the single comfiest article of clothing I’ve ever owned.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years? 
Since I’ll still be a few years too young to run for Vice President of the United States, I’ll most likely be co-organizing the world’s largest Santa Speedo Run with my brothers back in Berwick, Pennsylvania.

Who is your role model?  
My dad not only has this uncanny ability as a teacher to connect with anyone and change their lives, but he has a wealth of wisdom, generosity and perseverance.  Plus he landed my mom.  They’ve been married 39 years today.  I’d say that’s his most spectacular achievement.  If I can be half the man my dad is, then I did something right along the way.

Describe what you were like at age 10.
Sickeningly adorable and obnoxiously nerdy.  Family videos nauseate me.  I was an artist, and the family video camera was my canvas.  If I ever run for Vice President, there will surely be videos all over the internet of me performing “Skinnamarink” with my baby sister Wheezy.

Thanks for sharing, Josh! Stay tuned for more staff spotlights each Friday.

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