Carmel has its own ‘super volunteer’


I had a V8 moment the other day. The kind where the obvious hits you upside the head. The V8 in this case is Jim Burrell. The obvious, I realized, are his many years of unrecognized volunteer service to this community.

I ran into Jim at the last organizing committee meeting for the International Arts Festival. Jim was there, just as he has been for many years. He has expertise when it comes to shuttling guests from their cars to the venue. He was dutifully at the meeting, making sure the details were handled.

I also was aware Jim had responded earlier to the mayor’s call to help with logistics for a group of officials from Franklin, Tenn. They were touring the city to learn how to take some of Carmel’s success back to their community. It was then I realized how amazing Jim Burrell really is. He is a super volunteer, far too long unheralded.

Unheralded, no more.

I went to Ron Carter, one of the founders of the Carmel Farmer’s Market. Jim has worked with Ron for more than a decade, giving up his Saturday mornings to bring fresh fruits and vegetables to Carmel May through September.

“What I like most about Jim is his good humor, common sense approach and calm demeanor. He is always affirming to everyone he comes in contact with,” Carter said.

Katherine Dill, executive director of the Carmel Clay Historical Society, echoed those sentiments.

“Oh my goodness, what a fountain of knowledge Jim is. It is great to have someone with Jim’s encyclopedic knowledge of local history,” Dill said.

Jim is a member of the historical society. Jim and Katherine worked together on Carmel’s 175th anniversary celebration last year.

There are countless people reading this editorial who will know of stories and additional contributions Jim has made over the years. Like the fact that Jim spent time mucking out homes in Louisiana after hurricane Katrina and hanging drywall after the Henryville tornado.

He volunteers as an usher at The Center for the Performing Arts, is a member of Carmel Rotary Club and even works during Carmel Fest.

As you see Jim around Carmel the next few weeks, tell him thanks. I am sure you will be rewarded with his signature smile.

Thanks Jim Burrell.

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