By Gretchen Porier
SCHROON LAKE - Most people think of volunteering as helping out when time allows. Then there are some who turn volunteerism into a profession.
Ed Donley of Schroon Lake is one of those who, in his own words, has become a "professional volunteer."
He is also the 2009 Schroon Lake Citizen of Year. The award will be presented by the Schroon Lake Chamber of Commerce during its annual dinner Tuesday, June 16, at the Word of Life Inn restaurant.
As citizen of the year, Donley will serve as grand marshal of the Schroon Lake Fourth of July parade.
Donley is a true "jack of all trades" kind of guy. Even as a young man in college he was not only doing his course work, but venturing off into the Vermont mountains or flying helicopters.
Although Donley loved the Vermont mountains of his youth he now admits "the Adirondacks are better." So when he and his wife Brenda where looking for a summer home they came to Schroon Lake. They summered there until Donley took an earlier retire ment in 1998 and turned the summer camp into their year-round residence.
Donley became active in the Schroon Lake Community Church, serving on the board and co-chairing the finance committee for over 10 years.
Donley joined the town of Schroon Lions Club and is a past president and recipient of their Lion of the Year award, the Distinguished Service award and the Melvin Jones Dedicated Humanitarian Service award, the Lions' highest honor.
Donley said he enjoys being part of the "largest service organization of the world" and the Lion projects that help the local community.
For example, Donley runs the Lion-sponsored Schroon Lake lifeline that puts seniors and shut-ins in touch with friends and neighbors in case of emergency. He helped start the Lions golf tournament and the Lions ice-out contest. He also helps as a Lion driver for the American Cancer Society.