The heart of a volunteer program
By Chris Michlewicz; photos courtesy of Marti Jones
When Castle Rock Adventist Hospital was being built in 2010 and 2011, something told Marti Jones that she would one day have a role at the medical center.
Marti, a Village at Castle Pines resident for 18 years, says the notion came out of the blue, especially because she had no training or experience in the healthcare industry. Now she manages the hospital’s volunteers – all 100 of them – and enjoys every moment of it.
“Living in Douglas County, it’s amazing the caliber of volunteers we draw,” she said. “We have retired superintendents, nurses and doctors, engineers, professors and retired police officers.”
They touch nearly every department, greeting visitors at the front desk and working in surgery units, labor and delivery, and other areas.
This isn’t the first time Marti has thrown herself into a field in which she had no prior experience. She opened a bakery and cafe in Idaho in the same fashion in the 1990s, even though her educational and professional background is in public relations, advertising and journalism.
Her foray into baking was parlayed into a new role helping oversee bakers with special needs at Wellspring Community, then known as the Best Buddies Bakery. She had never worked with the special needs community, but it didn’t take long for her to fit in, and she found her time there incredibly rewarding. At the time, the Castle Rock-based organization had four bakers; that number ballooned to around 75 by the time she left seven years later (their baked goods are available at Castle Rock Adventist and other local establishments).
Marti admits that she enjoys the challenge of trying something new and thinks of herself as a “Jane of all trades and a master of none.” But those who know her might disagree with the latter. Marti is a quick learner and a go-getter with a track record of success, regardless of the space she’s in.
“I wonder what’s next for me,” she muses. “Maybe I’ll be a Tae Bo instructor.”
She and her husband, Michael, a consultant in the energy field, are parents of two adult daughters. The couple likes to go for bike rides and hikes, and they travel every chance they get. Marti’s favorite place is Naples, Italy, and she looks forward to the day when she can return to Europe and immerse herself in the various cultures.
Michael’s job brought them to Castle Pines. Originally from California, Marti is still enamored by the towering trees in this area.
“Every time I go for a walk, it’s like, ‘Oh my gosh. I’m so blessed to be here,’” she said.
Marti collects rolling pins and has a library of approximately 100 cookbooks; the most prized book was signed by the late pioneering chef Julia Child when Marti met her at a fundraiser. Of course, Marti loves variety in the kitchen, cooking Italian, Mexican and Asian dishes, and a plethora of baked desserts.
“I like new textures and tastes. It’s so wonderful to experience something new. It wakes all of the senses,” she said. “I’m one of those people who is like, ‘Can I talk to the chef?’”