Scottsdale Independent

Meet Your Neighbor: Robbi Henrickson believes in ‘wanderlust’

Robbi Henrickson, on left, with her dog, Arroyo River Runner. (submitted photo)

Name: Robbi Henrickson

Where I live: DC Ranch, Scottsdale

When & why I moved here: Due to job transfers, I have lived from California, Utah and Idaho to Minnesota and Wisconsin to Connecticut and New York, including three homes in the Far East (3 years in Okinawa, 2 years in Hong Kong, four years in Tokyo, Japan). So, when we retired, we had the opportunity to select where we wanted to live.

We picked Scottsdale!

Over the years, we have visited on holidays (1979-1992) and had a Gainey Ranch vacation place (1992-2001).  We moved to DC Ranch in 2001.  I moved here for the wide open spaces, the blue sky, the stunning mountains, the enchanting desert, the great people and the beautiful City with an abundance of parks, trails, views, shops, restaurants, entertainment and more.

What I like most about living here: I love the climate, mountains and desert…especially Scottsdale’s McDowell Sonoran Preserve which gives me an opportunity to see nature up close and personal.

Activities I enjoy: Hiking, travel, golf, yoga, motorcycling, piano

Clubs/organizations I’m involved in: McDowell Sonoran Conservancy Board of Directors; Scottsdale Leadership Class 22; Grape Nuts wine club;

My favorite charity or volunteer activity and why it deserves support from others? McDowell Sonoran Conservancy.  The Conservancy is a non-profit organization with more than 600 volunteers who help manage Scottsdale’s McDowell Sonoran Preserve…34,000 acres of beautiful land which is owned by the City and its residents.  The Conservancy enriches Preserve visitors’ experiences via free guided hikes, fun family events, geology/botany/zoology lectures and trailhead PathFinders.  In addition, the Conservancy volunteers (called Stewards) patrol 200 miles of trails, monitor trail conditions and assist the City in trail construction and maintenance.  The Conservancy’s Field Institute conducts research to understand our fragile desert ecosystem in order to better preserve and protect it for generations to come.

My No. 1 suggestion to new residents looking for ways to get involved in their community: Find your passion.  If it is hiking and biking, you may enjoy becoming a Conservancy volunteer.  Conservancy volunteers are trained and managed to make it easy to get started.  One of most popular programs is the Citizen Scientists volunteers who assist Field Institute professionals with wildlife monitoring, non-native plant encroachment, bird counts and more.

What one thing would you like to see changed in Scottsdale? Traffic is a bit of an issue. Perhaps it can be ameliorated by developing a light rail system.

My family: My husband and I have been married for 48 years.  We met in college.  He was the social chairman for his fraternity across the street from my sorority where I was the social chairman. Our son is an airline pilot and lives in the Carolinas with our daughter-in-law and our two grandkids. We have a cute and overly friendly Golden Retriever whose formal name is Arroyo River Runner….Runner for short.

What I do: Retired from IBM. My positions included Director, Asia Pacific Marketing Communications and Director, Global Channel Communications.

People who are an inspiration to me: The people who inspire me are future thinking thought-leaders who seize on an issue, develop innovative solutions and ensure that those solutions enrich and elevate mankind.  (Space X, Tesla)

My advice to today’s youth: is to experience wanderlust…keep moving, keep changing, keep challenging yourself, try new things, go to new places, take risks…

To volunteer in the city of Scottsdale visit www.ScottsdaleAZ.gov/volunteer.