I had the distinct pleasure to speak with longtime Lighthouse Guild volunteer, Herbert Biern. Herbert has spent a lifetime giving back to communities wherever he has lived. Herbert is a successful lawyer, first in New York, and then in Washington DC where Herbert volunteered at a therapeutic riding center that afforded kids with various challenges the opportunity to ride horses with Herbert’s guidance.
However, Herbert says his first memories of being involved with Lighthouse Guild go all the way back to Herbert’s childhood days growing up in Westchester. As a child at Halloween, instead of collecting candy, Herbert would ask for donations to Lighthouse Guild when trick or treating door to door.
In 2005, Herbert was again living in New York City, and as per usual, Herbert got involved with a charity: this time the Achilles Organization. Through the Achilles Organization Herbert met someone who he became a reader for and found himself, full circle, back to volunteering for Lighthouse Guild.
He later became a reader for someone who’s family was extremely grateful to Herbert when they found out how qualified he was. He said his favorite activity he shared with this client was reading the New Yorker…including the cartoons! He would meticulously describe the illustrations and then read the captions. He got quite good at descriptive illustration!
Herbert suffered a stroke recently so clients need to go his apartment to receive reading services. Aside from that, nothing has changed in Herbert’s charity to people who are visually impaired since he suffered the stroke.
How lucky this world is that there are people like Herbert Biern who make it a priority to give back!