By: Lianne Marquis
During our year end party, we awarded our 2010 Second Nature awards: Recognizing CMH employees who demonstrate innovation and initiative in the areas of environmental and community stewardship
Bob Lutz's commitment and contribution to the Banff community is so inspiring! So much so that he received the 2010 community stewardship award.
Bob was nominated by his peers; this is what a couple of them had to say about him.
"His patience, his skill and his ability to teach and share in a totally unselfish manner, is commendable."
"Collectively, Bob has made a tremendous impact on the kids (and the parents) of the Bow Valley and he represents the very best of what we want CMH employees to be in their communities."
Here is what Bob has to say.
LM: Can you tell me when and why you get involved with the Banff Minor Soccer Association?
BL: I started in the fall of 2003. I've helped out with children's science camps before and I've played competitive soccer all my life and refereed a fair bit. So when I saw a group of them playing at the high school one day it just seemed like the logical thing to do.
LM: It's not surprising that one of our IS guys is a math, chemistry and physics wiz!!!
I was so inspired to hear that you tutor elementary and high school kids! What is that experience for you?
BL: Tutoring is a similar kind of challenge to math contests but instead of using your knowledge in creative new ways, you need to explain your knowledge in new ways until you find an explanation that works for each student. Sometimes it takes a lot of creativity to find something that works. The other fun part is instead of solving questions, I need to make up new ones to help someone learn or practice a concept they're having difficulty with.
LM: What do you get out of volunteering your time with the kids?
BL: It's just fun. I enjoy helping people with anything.
LM: Bob, what is you're involvement with the Banff Community Greenhouse? How did you get involved in this project, do you have a green thumb?
BL: I've always enjoyed gardening and keeping plants around the house. The main focus for the greenhouse committee has been fundraising once we agreed on the location and type of structure to build. The really fun part about this project is that it has social aspect too because it will be something that will bring together 20 families and community groups in our town that probably didn't have any reason to connect without the greenhouse.
LM: Biking, another passion of yours! You have done many bike trips around this area (AB & BC) but have also been overseas to tour around Iceland, New Zealand, Norway. Which one of these trips stands out for you?
BL: The trips to Iceland have been the biggest adventures. The gravel roads traversing the interior of Iceland were quite a challenge from fording rivers, pushing the bike through the sandy parts, and strong headwinds but with a little luck there would be a hot spring at the campsite at the end of the day. My favourite part was biking across the Icelandic interior to visit the Askja caldera and wondering how many kilometres it had been since I saw a plant or something green.
LM: How do you find any spare time for yourself?? When you do find some, how do you enjoy spending it?
BL: Aside from the usual skiing, biking, squash and soccer, my hobby this past winter was building a 3-dimensional printer. It uses a melted stream of plastic (like what you use in a weed whacker) to slowly build objects one layer (about 0.3mm thick) at a time. Each layer sticks to the layer below and eventually your object cools off and is ready to use. There are sites where you can download other people's designs or you can make your own designs in tools like Google SketchUp. The biggest challenge so far was designing and printing a replacement part for a cross country ski binding. The printer I've got can print objects up to 10cm x 10cm x 10cm but there is a design for a bigger printer out there and most of the parts can be built with the printer I've got.
LM: What will you do with the $1,000 from the community stewardship award? Buy some new bike parts, plan another trip???
BL: I'm going to donate it to the Banff Community Greenhouse because we're only a few donations shy of being able to start construction and this should help get us there. With a little luck we'll be able to grow a few experimental vegetables this summer and have it ready for everyone next spring.
For more information on Stewardship at CMH See here