Each month, Brian Nazarian and his son, Wolfgang, load their utility trailer with tools and materials and head out to rendezvous with their team of volunteers in San Antonio, Texas. The retired Air Force civil engineer and current RS&H associate wants to instill in his son the values of integrity, service and excellence that he embodied while in the military – and which he sees reinforced every day at RS&H.
“He’s only 11 years old, and he’s received the citizenship award through his school,” said Brian. “He understands the value in doing good for the sake of doing good.”
On June 18, Brian received a citizenship accolade of his own, as the recipient of RS&H’s R. Ray Goode Community Service Award. This year, Brian has constructed more than a dozen wheelchair ramps, allowing disabled people to gain access to their homes. He has also donated blood – a particularly important act, as Brian’s blood type and antibody levels let him donate blood to all blood types in whole blood transfusions.
“His personal volunteer efforts improved the quality of life and medical recovery for 15 families, and in some cases, may have even helped save lives of an unknown number of trauma victims,” said nominator Scott Jarvis.
Brian volunteers as a Team Leader with Texas Ramp Project, a statewide nonprofit organization that works to provide elderly and disabled residents with free wheelchair ramps. In the last year alone, Brian organized and led the design, logistics and construction of 15 wheelchair ramps for those in need in San Antonio. RS&H associates from the San Antonio office constructed two ramps on their own as a community service/teambuilding activity.
Brian is also a regular blood donor. He began donating following Hurricane Harvey when a fellow RS&H associate, Elizabeth High, organized a group from the San Antonio office to donate blood. Brian had frequently traveled abroad in the Air Force and did not think he could donate because of it. When he learned that he was an eligible blood donor – and what his O-positive blood could do for others in the community – he started donating often, including after the Sutherland Springs mass shooting. Brian now takes part in the South Texas Blood and Tissue Center’s Brothers in Arms program. As part of this initiative, stored whole blood from male O-positive donors with low levels of certain types of antibodies is carried aboard emergency helicopters for use in whole blood transfusions for trauma patients of all blood types.
Brian now donates blood on a schedule, receiving a call every time he is eligible to donate.
Brian says this spirit of service came to him early on in his life, when he was required to do community service at school. His work in the Air Force further cemented his dedication to helping others.
Receiving this award is an honor, Brian said, but he doesn’t do community work for recognition.
“I do what I do because: one, I can; two, it needs to be done; three, it motivates others to do the same; and, four, it feels good to do it,” he said.
Brian has been with RS&H for three years and, during his job search, he looked for a company he could take pride in.
“Integrity, service before self, and excellence in all that you do: those are the values I lived by in the Air Force, and they are very similar to the values that RS&H holds,” Brian said.
At RS&H’s annual officers’ meeting, Brian received the community service award, one of four companywide awards given each year. After the festivities, as he drove home from the ceremony, he got a call from the blood bank. It was time for him to give some more blood.
“I said, ‘Well, I’m available now.’ So, I stopped in to drop off a quick pint on my way home,” said Brian.
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