Three months ago, Ann LeBrun of Redwood Falls took on a new role.

Having lived in the community for the past few years and served in different capacities, LeBrun is now serving as the aging and volunteer services coordinator for ACE of Southwest Minnesota in Redwood County, and in that role she is helping connect those in need of help with people who can offer it.

“I love working with people,” said LeBrun, adding she is excited about the opportunity to use this position to help impact her community.

When LeBrun came to town, she was not new to the community.

In fact, she spent much of her life in Redwood Falls.

“My family moved here when I was five,” she said.

Having grown up in the community and graduated from Redwood Falls High School, LeBrun said she has been able to connect with some familiar faces since her return.

Following high school, LeBrun continued her education in Alexandria where she earned a degree in commercial art. 

“That was in the pre-computer days,” LeBrun said with a smile.

With her new degree, LeBrun traveled south with a friend to Austin, Texas, and for the ensuing 35 years LeBrun had worked in graphic design in Texas and California. She even spent some time living in Jamaica.

The lure of Minnesota began calling LeBrun, and so she made the move back home.

“I missed the seasons,” said LeBrun, adding the busy life and traffic of larger metro areas was losing its appeal for her.

As the coordinator for volunteer programming in Redwood County, LeBrun is able to help people find purpose as they help others.

“We have 68 stations for volunteers in Redwood County,” said LeBrun, “and in 2017 there were 534 people who served in a volunteer role through the local program. We are looking for new volunteers all of the time.”

LeBrun said after a few months on the job she is still learning about the volunteer opportunities in the area, adding she is also still meeting and getting to know the volunteers. Her goal is to continue to attend different events to learn best how volunteers can serve.

“I am enjoying what I do tremendously,” said LeBrun, adding she is learning new things all of the time.

Currently, LeBrun said she is looking for people who can volunteer for upcoming events including the Redwood County Fair and Relay For Life.

Help is needed in the culinary, hobbies and crafts building and the horticulture building.

Volunteers are also sought to help with Relay For Life at Gilfillan with setting up tables and chairs and filling luminary bags.

To learn more about these and other upcoming volunteer opportunities at local events, contact LeBrun.

LeBrun also said a volunteer is being sought to help with the telephone reassurance program. Known as the “Good Morning” program, those volunteers call adults who live alone to check on their well-being and offer a sense of security and support allowing adults in need to remain living independently.

To learn more about the volunteer opportunities and how to get involved, contact LeBrun at (507) 627-1016 or via e-mail at ace.redwood@co.redwood.mn.us. One may also stop by her office in the Redwood County courthouse on Redwood Falls.

One can also visit the ACE of Redwood County volunteer Facebook page for updates.

LeBrun said she looks forward to the chance to continue to help the local volunteer program grow, adding Karen Christensen, the previous coordinator, did a great job in establishing a strong program in the county.

She is also excited to meet the people who help make the program a success.