ALFRED — David Campbell, successful businessman and founder and chair of All Hands Volunteers, will be the speaker for Alfred State’s 103rd commencement on May 18.
Campbell, a native of Buffalo and resident of Carlisle, Mass., has truly done it all over his 50 years in business—he’s been president of BBN Technologies of Cambridge and CEO at Computer Task Group of Buffalo and Xpedior of Chicago. He has also served as a member of the Board of Directors of Tektronix, M&T Bank, MRO Software, and Gibraltar Industries; he has been a trustee at both Niagara University and the University at Buffalo; held the position of chairman for Roswell Park Cancer Institute Council, the Buffalo United Way campaign, the Erie County IDA, and the Buffalo Chamber of Commerce; and he has served on the board of directors for numerous other corporate and nonprofit entities.
But it wasn’t until 2005 — after learning about the devastation caused by a tsunami in Thailand and traveling to that southeast Asian country to help — that he embarked on some his greatest humanitarian endeavors, becoming one of the founders of HandsonThailand.org, which brought in more than 200 volunteers and several hundred thousand dollars to assist in rebuilding five Phuket fishing villages.
Inspired to continue the work of providing hands-on assistance to communities in need, Campbell then incorporated All Hands Volunteers (previously known as Hands on USA and Hands on Disaster Response, respectively) in 2006 and quickly brought 1,500 volunteers to Biloxi, Mississippi, in response to Hurricane Katrina. Under his leadership over the next seven years, the organization managed more than 30 projects.
Today, All Hands Volunteers is a model of civic engagement. This U.S.-based nonprofit does its work with maximum impact and minimum bureaucracy. And each program is directed by the needs of the community in which the volunteers work, ensuring a timely, relevant, and culturally sensitive response.
To date, All Hands Volunteers has helped communities in Haiti, Peru, Thailand, Indonesia, the Philippines and Bangladesh. U.S. relief projects have taken place in Mississippi, New York, Tennessee, Rhode Island and Iowa.
Campbell has received numerous awards and recognitions during his career. He was named Citizen of the Year by The Buffalo News, received an honorary doctorate from Niagara University, and earned inclusion as a Fellow in the first year awards of the Purpose Prize.