Meet Anne and Saxon
A smiling, petite woman with a beautiful collie by her side has become a fixture at Southeastern Guide Dogs. Anne Brown has volunteered for over 15 years, and together with a team of friends and her service dog Saxon, she has become a fundraising force for our Walkathon. Last year, Anne’s Walkathon team raised over $30,000! Over the years her teams have sponsored 13 puppies and funded 5 student scholarships. On campus, she has volunteered over 2,100 hours, and off campus, she shares with everyone she meets how they, too, can get involved. Amazing!
As a teenager, Anne discovered the special joy found in helping others. After a tough childhood in an orphanage and foster homes, she had reunited with her mother. When she was 16, her mother insisted Anne volunteer at a local hospital. “I don’t think I’m going to like that,” Anne said, to which her mother replied, “You will, and someday you will feel it in your heart.”
After retiring from a busy career, Anne rediscovered that joy in her heart right here at Southeastern Guide Dogs. Her husband, Lloyd, was supportive, handling household chores so Anne could volunteer more.
In 2016, Anne said goodbye to her old dog, Libby. A week later, her husband passed away. As Anne endured the losses and reflected on life, she decided that someday, after she was gone, she wanted to keep helping. Anne enrolled as a Founder in our Heritage Society, remembering our school in her estate planning.
“It’s amazing to see the growth and where we are going into the future,” she says. “I know Southeastern is going to be here and keep transforming lives, and I wanted to make sure I was part of that future. I feel good about it. I know I’ll be part of the tomorrows here.”