Kevin Tubbesing of Shawnee has a clear goal for his life: He wants to leave the world a little better than he found it.
So, when he’s not working full-time as a commercial broker and developer for The Land Source, the company he owns, he’s logging countless hours as a volunteer in an effort to improve lives.
Tubbesing’s volunteer work with Rotary International has earned him the 2014 Community Leadership Award from BHC Rhodes, a Johnson County civil engineering and surveying company. The company will present Tubbesing with the award Wednesday at its annual Community Leadership Breakfast. Sporting Kansas City player Matt Besler will be on hand to make the presentation to Tubbesing.
Every year, BHC Rhodes honors an individual within their industry who has given back to the community in some way. Marketing coordinator Sam Saia said Tubbesing was the clear choice among this year’s candidates because of the amount of time he has given to helping others over the years.
“We’ve held a community leadership breakfast every year since 2005 to recognize an outstanding leader that has taken his time away from work to do volunteer work,” Saia said. “This year we chose Kevin because of his international humanitarian missions.”
Since 2006, Tubbesing has made six international trips as part of his Rotary involvement. He’s traveled to Haiti, where he coordinated a grant that helped provide cooking stoves to those in need after the earthquake. And he’s made a trip to Mexico where he helped construct a building where preschool and kindergarten could be taught.
Tubbesing isn’t afraid to roll up his sleeves and get his hands dirty. Trips to places like Uganda, Tanzania and Peru have also involved a lot of hard labor. It’s an environment that he’s comfortable with, having come from a family that never said no to others in need.
“My family has a tradition of service,” Tubbesing said. “My father and two brothers were in the military and it was instilled in us at an early age that the world was not about us but how we serve.”
Tubbesing himself served as a commissioned officer in the U.S. Army, serving in the U.S. Special Operations Command, followed by a stint in the Kansas National Guard.
“Having seen the other side of peace, I made a choice upon discovering Rotary and its mission that it would be the instrument that I would involve myself with in order to bring peace in the small way in which I can,” Tubbesing said.
Tubbesing is the past district governor for the Eastern Kansas Rotary and currently serves as the district’s foundation chairman. He’s also a member of the Rotary Foundation CADRE of Technical Advisers, which is a small group of technical advisers on major grants for Rotary International.
“We advise Rotary International when grants come in as to the quality of that application and we make make sure the money is being spent appropriately,” Tubbesing said. “We also go on site to review the work.”
Tubbesing said he has worked so closely with Rotary International because he feels it is an organization that is oriented toward peace. And ultimately as a father of three girls, he just wants to do work that will make the world a better place for his daughters to live in.
“It’s so important to look outside of yourself and your family because you cannot be blind to the rest of the world outside of your own personal experiences,” Tubbesing said. “The world will affect you. You can choose to disengage or engage and personally I choose to engage and make it as good a place as I can.”