U.S. Lawns in Tulsa: Improving Communities, Improving Lives
May 30, 2014
Tim Stauffer moved from Louisiana to Tulsa, Oklahoma so he could join the U.S. Lawns network. Four years later, he has become a leading example of our motto, “Improve your community. Improve your life.” Tim’s U.S. Lawns team provides a local nonprofit, the Ronald McDonald House of Tulsa, with unlimited free landscaping and snow maintenance. And he’s inspiring other franchisees around him to do the same.
For Tim, the connection to Ronald McDonald House is personal. “I had a friend in Louisiana whose son got cancer and was at St. Jude’s in Memphis,” he explains. “The family had to stay in Memphis, off and on, for three years. If it wasn’t for the Ronald McDonald House, they wouldn’t have been able to afford a place to stay. They would have had to give up their house—they would have lost everything.”
The Ronald McDonald House network of local chapters across the U.S. offer housing for families with children who are forced to travel for medical care. The cost of stay is just $10-$25 a night, and no family is turned away for lack of funds. Tim says watching his friend’s son battle cancer was hard enough, but at least the family could stay together. So, when he met the Executive Director of the Ronald McDonald House of Tulsa at a networking event, he was inspired to offer his services, free of charge.
Today, Tim’s involvement with the organization has grown to include overall leadership. Jean Ann Hankins, current local chapter executive director, says, “The Ronald McDonald House of Tulsa is so fortunate to have Tim Stauffer of U.S. Lawns as a board member. Not only does he attend all board meetings and serve as a member of the Facilities Committee, he takes care of all of our lawn needs.”
Tim says it’s not about him—it’s giving back to the community. He says being involved at Ronald McDonald House has gotten him new jobs and referrals, but that’s not the biggest benefit.
“We feel good knowing we’re doing it. Our crews feel good, knowing that the company they work for gives back.” He says that for the most part, morale is better when employees know they’re getting paid to work for a cause.
Jean Ann Hankins couldn’t be happier with the service provided by U.S. Lawns Team 344. She’s written glowing reviews about their mowing, clearing, seasonal color planting, arbor care and snow/ice management. “I am grateful for Tim’s friendship, but more important, the generosity and giving spirit he shows us every time he comes to the House,” she says.
Each House is owned and operated by a local Ronald McDonald House Charities Chapter. The majority of Ronald McDonald House operating and programming funds come from individuals, organizations and businesses.
Fellow U.S. Lawns franchisees Lane and Janine Roath of Oklahoma City are close colleagues and friends of Tim’s, and have been inspired by his example to donate their services to their local chapter, Ronald McDonald House of Oklahoma City. Tim says he thinks everyone can benefit from doing charitable work, from the newest franchisee to the established owner with multiple territories.
“I would say to a franchisee who’s thinking about starting something like this that it doesn’t have to be a major commitment at first. Maybe it’s something you do once a month, or every few months. But once you start giving back, you’ll realize that’s what we’re all about.”