Anyone who has visited a Life Remodeled project site has seen the buzz of an army of volunteers bearing weed whips, tree trimmers and lawnmowers on the attack, or heard the high-pitched whine of table saws cutting plywood for boarding up vacant houses, or felt the rumble of heavy-duty equipment carting away brush and debris.
What about the click-click-click of computer keyboards? The silent hum of modems and routers? Those don’t come to mind. Nor do they make good TV shots or newspaper pictures.
And Steve Woloszyn likes it that way.
Steve’s role in Life Remodeled started innocently enough. He was sitting in church one Sunday in 2014 when CEO Chris Lambert was telling the congregation about the Cody High School project.
Steve stirred a bit; thinking to himself, “I know a little about high schools.” (He actually knows a lot). And, “I know a little about technology and computers.” (He actually knows quite a lot). “Maybe there’s something I could do to help.”
But he didn’t pick up the phone that day. Or the next. Actually, for three or four weeks he wrestled with what to do. Finally, he made the call. And ever since he’s been the Life Remodeled technology project advisor/coordinator/planner/director and all around go-to guru for anything related to computers and technology.
Having recently retired as the Director of Technology for the Grosse Pointe School District, Steve’s been immersed in technology for 45 years.
At Life Remodeled, situated comfortably behind the scenes, Steve works with the schools, the technology vendors and assorted suppliers and electricians. He regularly relies on his lengthy list of vendor relationships for help. For example, long after the major indoor projects were done at Cody in 2014, Steve was approached by a teacher asking if he could put together a computer lab.
He took it on, using recycled computers, network cables and installation from Midwest Computer Resources, a carpet allowance from Oakpointe Church, leftover paint from the Life Remodeled projects and he found student volunteers to paint walls and set up the desks. Detroit Public Schools technology services provided assistance with network configuration and software installation. Cody had a new computer lab for state-required online testing.
Asking for stuff isn’t for everybody. For Steve, it’s an art. More times than he can count he’s expressed a need to a supplier or vendor only to hear, “Funny you should mention that…we were just talking about how we could help Life Remodeled.”
Long after the sexier, more visible projects are completed and Life Remodeled has moved on to the next big project, Steve and his ongoing relationship with the teachers and administrators keeps the technology pipeline flowing.
And he likes it that way just fine.