This Pro Bono Week, Taproot Foundation is spotlighting nonprofits, business professionals, and companies who are playing key roles in bringing the impact of pro bono to life in communities around the globe.
In today’s fast-paced world, we’re up against a never-ending to-do list each and every day. It can be hard to carve out even a moment to breathe let alone give back to our community. But Los Angeles-based HR professional Krys Doctor still finds time to share her 20+ years of experience with nonprofits she’s passionate about. She knows that when she takes the time to connect with organizations in need, she’s making her community a better place.
Finding purpose through pro bono
“I find a sense of purpose in volunteering,” says Doctor. She’s been active in her community for years through Habitat for Humanity, Los Angeles Downtown Women’s Center, and local food banks, but those opportunities left her asking, “how can I give more?” Through her network of friends and colleagues, she discovered pro bono service through Taproot.
Now in her sixth year as a skilled volunteer, Doctor has completed over 100 hours of service and participated in nearly every pro bono opportunity that Taproot has to offer. Like many volunteers, there’s one pro bono project that stands out—her very first one. Doctor and a team of HR consultants were paired up with LevittQuin, a nonprofit that provides legal services to low- and moderate-income families, to create a leadership and development strategy that would help the organization cultivate their staff and better serve their community. The team dug deep with LevittQuin leadership to create a strategy that not only met their needs that day, but was truly forward looking. “Through this project, I learned to seek first to understand, rather than to be understood. Taking this approach gave me great context and allowed me to better understand the nonprofit’s needs.”
And after her very first project, Doctor “fell in love with pro bono.”
Honoring those who’ve helped
Doctor’s generous spirit and passion for service are rooted in lived experiences. “When I shifted from the marketing field to HR, I had to lean on the expertise of my peers and mentors,” notes Doctor. Their insights on quality management-focused resources and courses helped Krys elevate her skills and become the expert she is today. So volunteering is really twofold for Doctor: “It not only gives me a greater sense of purpose, but it’s a way to honor those people who have helped me.”
And her commitment to serving others stems a strong belief in equality. As a mother, Doctor is passionate about issues like equal access to affordable housing, education, and healthcare. “We can give everyone a chance to champion their own life if we make sure they have access to greater, more equal opportunities.”
Doctor recognizes that pro bono service is of great value to her professional life, too. Through projects and events, she continues her own learning from other HR professionals and from her partners in the nonprofit field. “All the resources and knowledge I’ve gained from pro bono have enhanced my toolkit as a HR consultant,” says Doctor. “From a professional standpoint, pro bono is a huge plus. We need to continuously challenge ourselves with new experiences. And volunteering your skills pro bono provides you with just that.”
What it all really boils down to, though, is making a difference in her community. “The best way to give back is to give forward.”