Although he retired from Honeywell Inc., a Minneapolis based manufacturer of control systems, in 1978, Elmer Frykman's retired years have not been spent resting quietly at home. Instead, he has taken an active leadership role in creating and ensuring the success of the Honeywell Retiree Volunteer Project (HRVP). Started in 1979, HRVP links the needs of nonprofit organizations with the skills and interest of volunteers—all Honeywell retirees. Elmer and his fellow volunteers, worked with the company to develop this program to provide much needed volunteer services to the community and allow retirees to use the skills they gained while employed.
HRVP has proved rewarding and successful for all involved—the nonprofit agencies who benefit from the volunteers' services and the volunteers themselves who are engaged in tasks that utilize their personal skills, interests and expertise. Today, there are approximately 1,044 volunteers who support more than 300 nonprofit agencies in the Twin Cities area. HRVP volunteers have collectively donated four million service hours to their organizations—a contribution worth more than $40 million. Much of this success can be attributed to Elmer and his outstanding leadership.
A visionary and tireless worker for HRVP, Elmer's work achievements include serving as the first chairman of the HRVP Management Committee and developing the screening process HRVP uses to recruit retiree volunteers and complete the volunteer placement process (almost 2,500 retiree volunteers have been recruited through this process). He also represents HRVP with a variety of nonprofit organizations dedicated to retirees and their concerns, and shares information about HRVP with other companies to help them establish similar programs.
It would be next to impossible to list all of the highlights of Elmer’s service to HRVP. This busy husband, father and grandfather simply understands the basic needs of people—to feel useful and appreciated—and strives to fill these needs through the HRVP program. Although Elmer is technically retired from Honeywell, his successes during this second unofficial "career" with the organization rivals the accomplishments of his previous employment and continues to touch the lives of many in the process.