SERVICE SPOTLIGHT: League Member Pam Shares Her Love For Children
June 24, 2016
We had the exciting opportunity to chat with Epiphany League member, Pam McKulla. Born in the small farming town of Manteca in the Central Valley, Pam now lives in Orinda with her husband Bob, their golden retriever, Riley and their turtle, Flash. They have a private winery, named Turtle Crossing by their son, where Bob picks and crushes grapes to bottle delicious wine to share with friends and family. Through the example of her mother, Pam has always had a passion for helping children. During her time with the Epiphany League, Pam has served as the Décor Co-Chair for the Benefit Party and Show. She also is involved with the Children’s Theatre Association in San Francisco. Beyond that, Pam acts and models locally, and is always looking for the perfect “spirited grandmother” role.
1. When did your interest in service come about?
I’ve always loved working with children. Many years ago a school reached out to me to be a mentor to a girl in junior high. When I met her she was young and afraid, now she is a beautiful woman. We are in touch frequently throughout the year. I also volunteered with CASA for Children, as a Court-Appointed Special Advocate, selected to work with a child in foster care from Bayview. CASA works to reduce child abuse and neglect. I’ve gone to court on her behalf several times, as she has troubled relations with her family. I am also a mother with a son, so children are very important to me.
2. How did you decide to choose to volunteer your time on behalf of Epiphany Center?
Like many other Epiphany League members, I belong to Children’s Theatre Association (CTA). I was brought in by my friend Irene Holmes and I’ve been here now for two years. It makes me feel good to give my time to such a valuable experience.
3. What’s your favorite memory from Epiphany Center?
I enjoy the yearly luncheon very much, we all come together on behalf of the clients. My favorite memories are listening to the clients speak firsthand about their transformations--the idea that they are benefiting from Epiphany Center’s programs and working hard to achieve their goals.
They start to realize possibilities they never knew existed before they came to Epiphany Center.
4. What or who inspires you?
My mother. She was always helping others, always making herself available to others, especially around holiday times and special gatherings. She was a very forward thinking woman for her time. I can only hope to be half the woman she was.
5. Of the five major Vincentian Values of Respect, Compassionate Service, Simplicity, Advocacy for the Poor, and Creativity, which one is your favorite to practice and why?
Respect. Respect for myself and respect for others. Having respect for yourself and respect for others keeps you honest.
6. What is the biggest reward you get from volunteering at Epiphany Center?
The smiles, the smiles from the clients, and getting to learn from the clients. It is always an honor to have lunch with them and to hear their stories. They have a lot to teach us, and their honesty inspires me. They are learning to be honest and vulnerable with us, and I admire that.
7. Favorite spot in SF?
I love the city of San Francisco. I spent a lot of my life living here, we raised our son in the city and a lot of my friends live here. I love walking around Lands End and Golden Gate Park.