Decorating Den Interiors' Jim Bugg steps down as Yellow Ribbon Fund chairman
Larry Thomas -- Furniture Today, December 7, 2012
James S. Bugg, Sr., chairman of Decorating Den Interiors and member of the International Franchise Association Hall of Fame, has stepped down as chairman of the veterans' nonprofit organization Yellow Ribbon Fund, an organization he helped found.
Jim Bugg, Sr with Marine Corporal Todd Love at a Chevy Chase Club (Md.) fundraiser this past summer. Love is a triple amputee, wounded when he stepped on an IED while on patrol in Afghanistan. (photo by Susan Privot)
Since the Washington, D.C.-based organization's inception eight years ago, more than $8 million has been raised for the purpose of "Welcoming Our Injured Service Members Home."
Bugg, of Chevy Chase, Md., has served as the only chairman of the Yellow Ribbon Fund, but this month passed the responsibilities on to fellow co-founder Ed Quinn, chairman of building materials company TW Perry.
"While the staff at our local military hospitals do a great job healing our heroes, a gap remains in the services the military can provide them and their families; That's where the Yellow Ribbon Fund fits in," Bugg said. "It is the person-to-person direct help we give to so many of our injured service members and their families that is so meaningful, and I aim to continue in as much of that as possible."
Free lodging and transportation are just a few of the services the fund provides for family members of service personnel in local hospitals. "We get to know many of these families in a very close way and see how they come together to meet the challenges they face because of combat injuries," Bugg said. "Our volunteers give countless hours of mentoring and guidance."
While its support network has grown to more than 7000 donors, Bugg says he's especially proud that the Yellow Ribbon Fund is rated as one of the top veteran's organizations on the Great Nonprofits website and as one of the 68 best small charities in the Washington, D.C. area by the Catalogue for Philanthropy. "Since our beginning, 83 cents of every dollar spent has gone to meet the needs of injured service members and their families," he added.
"Jim Bugg brought a great combination of passion for our injured vets, an eye to see their future needs, and the friends and resources to help move a fledgling organization along to success," said Mark Robbins, executive director. "By any standard, the Yellow Ribbon Fund has measured up to be one of the premiere nonprofits that support our injured service members and their families. He was the right person at the right time - and no one could have done it better."
"The greatest joys of Jim's tenure," Robbins added, "Have been his friendships with the injured service members, their caregivers, and hospital staff we serve. At Poverty Point, his property on the Eastern Shore, the injured and their wives and girlfriends have enjoyed weekends hunting, fishing and basking in the great outdoors. To ensure that even wheelchair-bound service members could join in, Jim built a wooden deck on the water's edge and turned it into a duck blind."
Many of Decorating Den Interiors franchise owners have presented interior design workshops throughout the country to raise money for the Yellow Ribbon Fund.
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