Rodney Gaddy never thought of his family as poor. His life was rich in many other ways. He had loving parents who worked hard to provide for him and his two brothers. Rodney’s talent on the basketball court gave him the opportunity to attend a Jesuit college in West Virginia on an athletic scholarship. He was the first person in his family to attend college. He then went on to pursue a law degree, graduating from Georgetown University Law School.
Helping others is something that has always been ingrained in Rodney. As he shared, “To whom much is given, much is required.” Because he is in a position to give back, he does so in many ways. He wants to inspire others to give back, not necessarily in cash either. He wants people to know they can give their gift of talent or time too. He actively participates on three board of directors and chairs the board for one of the organizations. It gives Rodney great joy being able to give back to our community.
While Rodney has been afforded many opportunities, he also knows the inequity and inequality that exists amongst people of color, which he’s experienced himself. This also motivates him to give back and to ensure others are not left behind because of race.
After retiring from a successful law career, Rodney was approached to be the Executive Director of ONE Charlotte Health Alliance. New to the nonprofit health sector, he began looking at the different health care nonprofits in Charlotte. He was impressed with the programs Care Ring offered, and the unmet need we fill in our community.
Care Ring collaborates with ONE Charlotte Health Alliance in multiple ways. Rodney has enjoyed working alongside our staff, describing them as positive and caring.
Until we reached out to Rodney about highlighting him for Black Philanthropy Month, he never thought of himself as a philanthropist. He thought of philanthropists as people who are multimillionaires. After looking up the definition, he realized he is a philanthropist.
We are honored to highlight Rodney as one of many Black Philanthropists who is making a difference for the people who live, work, and play in our community. Thank you for being an inspiration and motivating others to follow your lead! Our community is stronger and better because of you.
Special thanks to Care Ring staff member Jennifer Frey, who interviewed Rodney for this story.
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