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OFS nominates Devin Grob for YouthBuild Member of the Year Award 

Operation Fresh Start (OFS) nominated Legacy participant Devin Grob for the 2024 YouthBuild AmeriCorps Spirit of Service Member of the Year Award. Devin’s journey to becoming a standout participant in the YouthBuild AmeriCorps program is a testament to his resilience and determination. His nomination reflects his hard work, dedication, and profound impact on those around him.  

Devin working on a job site.

From Setbacks to New Beginnings


Devin's path was not always a smooth one. Despite doing well academically, Devin was expelled from high school and spent a year working to support his girlfriend and baby. With Devin’s parents being OFS alumni, he decided to follow their path.   


Exemplary Service and Leadership


According to his Legacy Construction Supervisor, Tom Griffin, Devin's work ethic and initiative were evident from the moment he stepped onto the construction site. Tom recalled how Devin gravitated towards challenging tasks that others often avoided.  


“While installing drywall, he took it upon himself to cut and install all the missing corners of our cathedral ceiling walls,” Tom said. “Recently, he and another member installed the entire laminate flooring for the house and the tile in the bathroom in four days!”  


Devin's dedication and skill have made him a role model for his peers, and he consistently sets a high standard for others to follow. Devin's commitment to his education has been equally impressive. He completed 1,000 hours of academic curriculum within four months of his AmeriCorps term, demonstrating that perseverance and hard work can lead to success.  


Embodying the Spirit of Service


Devin's dedication to service and his community is evident in every project he undertakes. His great attendance, positive attitude, and ability to get along with everyone make him a valued team member. Devin has empowered himself through his AmeriCorps service and shaped a promising future. He has become a solid, reliable, and encouraging leader, embodying the spirit of service that OFS stands for.  

“Devin checks all the boxes of this program, but it is his wholehearted ‘buy-in' to our organization's values that make him embody the spirit of service at OFS,” Tom said.  
Devin with other Legacy participants.

Personal Growth and Future Aspirations


Devin's time with OFS has been transformative. Peers, supervisors, and staff around him have witnessed his growth.  


“He is showing a sense of pride in his workmanship and academic studies,” Tom said. “His confidence is growing with every new task or process we undertake. He is truly stepping up for himself and his family in becoming a well-adjusted and happier person with so much humility and gratitude.”  


Devin's journey is a testament to his ability to overcome adversity. He reengaged with his academics after starting a family, making sacrifices to ensure his success. This return to school gave him the focus needed to excel, and his determination has been unwavering. This newfound confidence has solidified his goals of pursuing a career as a carpenter and furthering his education.  


Devin's Perspective


Reflecting on his AmeriCorps service at OFS, Devin acknowledges the personal growth that he has experienced.


“When I first got here, I was pretty shy,” Devin said. “I didn’t like to talk at first, but a lot of the people here were very nice.” 


Over time, Devin became more comfortable and confident in interacting with others. He also takes immense pride in his work, realizing the impact of affordable housing projects in the community. 


"We're building a house for somebody that really needs it, and it will be really appreciated,” Devin said. “Not only am I learning a lot and gaining skills, but I’m also helping people who need help in our community. That’s been really satisfying.” 

Devin also spoke highly about his AmeriCorps Service at OFS. “OFS is such a nice place to be with people who are very open and caring with everyone,” Devin said.


Devin added that OFS and AmeriCorps helped him to return to school and obtain his diploma. With this foundation of success, Devin plans to attend college to further develop his carpentry and construction skills while possibly studying construction management.  

Devin's father, Adam, in 1999 when he was a participant at OFS.

A Legacy of Service


Devin's story is made even more poignant by his family’s history with AmeriCorps. Twenty years ago, his parents were OFS participants themselves. Brian McMahon, now the OFS Executive Director, supervised Devin’s father in the program, highlighting Operation Fresh Start’s enduring impact through multiple generations. 


Devin’s journey from high school expulsion to role model and leader within YouthBuild AmeriCorps is a powerful example of resilience, community, and the transformative power of service. His nomination for YouthBuild Member of the Year is well-deserved, as we recognize his exceptional contributions and bright future ahead. 



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