Monday Morning Meet Your Leaders – Lynette Whiteman
This is our first post in a new series called Monday Morning Meet Your Leaders! Each week, we will highlight a leader from our community. You will get to know a little bit more about them and their organization with a few fun facts, too!
This week, the spotlight is on Lynette Whiteman, Executive Director of Caregiver Volunteers of Central Jersey. CVCJ is celebrating their 25th Anniversary and just held their gala this past weekend. It was a successful, reminiscent and fun evening. Read more about Caregiver Volunteers and Central Jersey and how they help the seniors of our community.
And now, here is Lynette!
- What is one of the most important qualities of a great leader?
For me it is listening to a lot of different opinions and creating a safe space for people to try new things and make mistakes. I never want my staff to be afraid to try something new because it might not work out. Even if things don’t happen the way you planned, you always learn something and sometimes things surprise you in a really positive way. I thrive in collaborative environments and love the give and take of creativity. I think leadership is hearing from a lot of different voices and making decisions to move an organization in a positive direction with vision and kindness.
- How does your organization take our community to the next level?
Caregiver Volunteers of Central Jersey cares for people who are often forgotten and have no voice. We do this with an incredibly caring and dedicated staff, board and most importantly over 1000 volunteers that come from all faiths and backgrounds. I see incredible division in our country right now and our leaders are trying to make us fear one another and tear us apart instead of bringing us together. Our agency proves that there is a lot of goodness in our community. Our volunteers go above and beyond to help their neighbors in need, no matter what they look like, where they worship or where they were born.
- What is your favorite thing to do in your spare time?
Spending time with my family (which totally includes my 2 dogs) is my favorite thing to do. Now that my 3 boys are grown and out of the house getting together with everyone is a true treat and makes my heart sing. I am really proud that my sons have grown up to be really fine people who all volunteer with nonprofit agencies to make life better for other people. My guilty pleasures are binging Netflix series and true confessions, I love 48 Hours Mystery on Saturday nights…
- What is your favorite food/recipe and why?
Does calling Chinese Food restaurants for delivery count??? Everyone who knows me well, knows I am the opposite of a “domestic goddess” and Hamburger Helper was my “go to” when my boys were small. When I do cook, I’m ok, but I’d much rather be reading a book than be in the kitchen. I would say the one good thing I make is Eggplant Parmigiana so whenever the boys are home, they know they’re going to get that for dinner and leftovers…