A volunteer group's success usually depends on one or two key individuals. Morris Judson Jr. is such an individual. Mo, as he is known by all, is a retired mathematics high school teacher.
He had always had a heart for others and has served in various capacities in his community. In the 1970's, he and another teacher were the first to teach computer sciences in the area. And twelve years ago when he joined the AARP Tax-Aide volunteer program in New York's Rockland County, the impact of his involvement was immediate and equally significant.
AARP Tax-Aide is the nation's largest free, volunteer-run tax counseling and preparation service for middle and low income taxpayers, with special attention given to those of age 60 and older. The program operates under a cooperative arrangement with the Internal Revenue Service as a part of the Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE) Program. Although the tax season is just three and a half months long, Mo devotes eight months of his time each year to the program and related activities.
As the district's Technology Specialist, Mo is in charge of electronic filing. He has worked closely with IRS and with software providers since e-filing was implemented in 1985. Thanks to his efforts, 90% of approximately three thousand returns in Rockland County were filed electronically, which is by far the highest percentage in the area.
Every computer-literate Tax Aide volunteer in Rockland has been trained personally by Mo. In addition, Mo is always available to answer their questions by phone, e-mail or in person. He has also trained an elite group of volunteers to transmit the returns to IRS after they have been prepared by the volunteers.
Mo is responsible for receiving, maintaining, distributing, and storing the computers loaned by IRS for the use of volunteers who prepare electronic returns. In addition, he receives and distributes IRS printers for use at each volunteer site and provides printer cartridges, paper and other necessary supplies.
His volunteer activities extend well beyond his e-filing responsibilities. Each year, he helps train the volunteers in both federal and state income tax law and regulations. During the tax season, he prepares returns himself and serves as the Site Supervisor at three sites. Mo reviews each return as a quality review process for accuracy, and to ensure that the clients benefit from every tax deduction and credit for which they are eligible. Finally, in addition to all of that, he transmits the returns prepared at this sites and performs all or the required follow-up activities that are too numerous to mention. In other words , for a volunteer serving as Site Coordinator and County Technology Specialist, e-filing is a whole lot more than just pressing a button!
Mo's energy and enthusiasm are truly amazing. Despite the many demands of his responsibilities as a super-volunteer, he remains a kind and considerate person. His dedication, demeanor and innate desire to help others are much appreciated by the taxpayers who come to him for help, and by the volunteers who work with him.