Meet Your Neighbor: Valley native Matt Metz gives back to Scottsdale

Matt Metz (submitted photo)

Name: Matt Metz

Where I live: Scottsdale Ranch master planned community

When & why I moved here: I was born and raised in the Valley, on the border between the Biltmore and Arcadia areas. My wife and I moved to a home on a golf course in Scottsdale near Hayden and Cactus in 2000. In 2012, we moved to home on beautiful Lake Serena in Scottsdale Ranch.

What I like most about living here: Our home on Scottsdale Ranch is on Lake Serena, a beautiful man-made lake. It’s a wonderful suburban community with lots of things to do and see nearby. I love the quality of life and suburban feel of Scottsdale.

Activities I enjoy: Volunteering my services to various organizations. Building web sites. Boating on Lake Serena. Traveling (and then creating vacation videos to document and save the experience).

Clubs/organizations I’m involved in: I serve on the Scottsdale Ranch Board of Directors and Architectural Committee, volunteer as a Navigator at Sky Harbor Airport, serve on Scottsdale’s Board of Adjustment, read for Sunsounds (broadcast service for those who cannot read due to disability), and volunteer on Arizona’s Judicial Performance Review teams. I’ve also served on the Friends of Public Radio Arizona and taught computers to adult students at Scottsdale Community College.

My favorite charity or volunteer activity and why it deserves support from others? It’s really hard to pick my favorite. Serving as a Navigator at Sky Harbor airport is very rewarding because I’m able to make traveling through a large and busy airport less stressful. Working with my HOA allows me to have a direct impact on the quality of life and property values of my immediate neighborhood and to meet great people in my community.

My No. 1 suggestion to new residents looking for ways to get involved in their community: First, identify your passions. Do you love animals? Is technology an area you’re good in? Do you like working outdoors? Then look at the web sites of organizations that are involved in your passions, and contact the folks there to ask about opportunities. Get out and meet your neighbors; you’ll find that talking with them about your neighborhood is a rich source of ideas for how to get involved.

What one thing would you like to see changed in Scottsdale? It’s hard to figure out what to change, since Scottsdale is such a great place to live. If pressed, I would ask that we return to our roots as a suburban, low density community that draws residents and tourists looking for a low-density, scenic experience.

My family: I love sharing my life with my wife of 33 years, Claudette. My mom still lives in Scottsdale and we get to visit her almost every week. My brother and his wife live in Portland.

What I do: I retired from a career of consulting and working for a Fortune 500 company over ten years ago. Since retiring, my time is filled with volunteer activities, frequent get-togethers with the people I’ve worked and played with over the years, travel, designing web sites, going to the gym, providing computer assistance to friends and family, and occasional consulting jobs to local companies.

People who are an inspiration to me: My dad, who died in 2009, was an amazing man who lived the values he preached; community, justice, and giving back. My wife continues to be my guidepost and reminds me of what’s truly important in my life.

My advice to today’s youth: Realize that in addition to being an important individual, you are part of a community. Look around you for opportunities to help and get engaged with your neighbors and coworkers to improve the lot of those who might not have received all the opportunities that you have. I truly believe in Karma and know that you make the world a better place – both for others and for yourself – by helping those around you. If you see something that’s not right or fair, make yourself part of the solution.

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

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