Saturday Spotlight – Caitlin Pollard
Chapter: Northeast Region / Oswego
Member Since: November 10, 2014
Motto: “Courage starts with showing up and letting ourselves be seen.”
Why Did You Join Team RWB?
“I first saw the infamous red shirts of Team Red, White, and Blue at the local Veterans Day 3 miler in Oswego, NY. I was hesitant to go up to the group, but their positivity was infectious and I just knew that I couldn’t pass up being a part of whatever ‘it’ was. I was looking for a deeper connection to my community and this seemed like a great way to blend all of my interests together! I wasn’t sure as a civilian where I fit in with a veteran service organization, but the group was quick to tell me ‘We’re all Eagles’. There wasn’t a chapter in Oswego at the time, but I still went home and signed up that day. We ended up having our first Wear the Eagle Wednesday run a week later (and in a blizzard!) and the rest is history!”
What has Been Your Favorite Event or Experience with Team RWB?
“Watching our group of ‘Osweagles’ go from 3 people running in a blizzard to almost 70 coming out for our summer picnic has been absolutely amazing. And it’s not just the numbers, but the quality of the relationships that has developed. We have a true family in Oswego County and it’s been incredible to watch it grow. Beyond the Oswego Chapter, I was fortunate enough to be selected as an Eagle Leader Fellow in 2017 and was able to attend many amazing experiences as a representative of Team RWB including Peer Support Training with Growing Veterans and Mike Erwin’s Seminar on Character. Within the organization I attended multiple Eagle Leader Academies and Camps, including the Northeast Outdoor Adventure Camp and Midwest Storytelling Camp, which were both highlights of my fellowship.”
How do you serve your community?
“Now that my fellowship has concluded, I’ve stayed on with the Northeast Region as a Regional Volunteer. A large amount of my focus has been on helping our region with the implementation of the new website and conducting trainings and sessions on the features. I love learning new technology and helping others feel confident in their abilities as well! Within Oswego I recently shifted to Communication Director and continue to serve my chapter through that role, helping our members embrace the new system and making the Osweagles a known name in Oswego County. I’m also our yoga POC and have taught EagleNamas to our Eagles, as well as teach consistently at Amnesty Crossfit have worked with our local varsity cross country team as well.”
What Inspires You?
“What inspires me is seeing people do more than they thought they could. Whether it’s watching someone finish their first half marathon or present to a group of people, seeing people realize their potential is such an impactful moment. With Team RWB, I’m lucky enough to witness these moments on a consistent basis, and it never is any less inspiring than the first time!”
How Has Team RWB Impacted Your Life?
“I think a better question is how HASN’T Team RWB impacted my life? From Team RWB, I’ve developed my purpose and my passion, I’ve gained a new family, and I’ve gone beyond anything I ever imagined for myself. Being a member of Team RWB and growing into a leader in the organization has shaped my whole identity.”
What Would You Say to Someone Who is Thinking of Joining Team RWB?
“Just do it. There’s absolutely nothing to lose and everything to gain! With such a wide variety of events out there, there will always be another Eagle that shares your interest. Beyond running and yoga, we’ve hosted crocheting nights, bowling socials, have helped dig out fire hydrants in snowstorms, and have a book club. No matter what your niche is, there will be Eagles with you every step of the way!”