VISALIA RESCUE MISSION
SHON BALDWIN (BA '97)
Shon Baldwin (BA ’97) tracks numbers as the finance director at the Visalia Rescue Mission. His work is vital to the mission providing food, overnight shelter and a year-long recovery program for people seeking help.
“I have a real conviction that any organization with arms of outreach should have integrity and good faith behind the scenes that people can trust,” Baldwin says.
He brings to his work the servant leadership he saw at FPU, “The faculty had men and women who were humble, down-to-earth, genuine and didn’t define themselves by their status, degrees or position. They had strong emphasis on the servanthood of Jesus Christ,” he says. President Emeritus Edmund Janzen and Wayne Huber, emeritus music faculty, exemplified that leadership to Baldwin. Janzen was honest and vulnerable with students about his successes and failures, and Huber saw the potential that students might not have seen in themselves.
Baldwin says he tries to follow those examples with his staff. For instance, when he became finance director, he made a point to do as much listening as talking with the people who report to him. “I took time to build trust and not just talk about numbers and finances. It wasn’t me only coming and saying, ‘I’m in charge. This is what we’re going to do.’
“If genuine integrity isn’t injected into the mostly unseen foundation of an organization, it will eventually crumble,” he adds.
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