Retired police officer picked for national Young Marines Volunteer of the Year award - The San Diego Union-Tribune
During her 30 years as a San Diego police detective, Susan Righthouse kept an eye out for kids in trouble. On patrol assignments she listened for radio calls coming in about kids who might be in harm’s way, especially through domestic violence calls. Helping kids in trouble became her mission. But more recently, Righthouse set her mind on helping kids before they get in trouble.
She joined the local Miramar unit of the Young Marines as a volunteer eight years ago and has been helping steer youths to healthy, productive lives, without drugs.
More than 6,000 volunteer hours later, Righthouse was named National Adult Volunteer of the Year for the Young Marines group, headquartered in Dumfries, Va.
Righthouse, one of more than 2,500 volunteers across the country, was recognized as a “standout” mentor and role model for the nationwide Young Marines, a nonprofit service and leadership program for kids ages 8 to 18. The program fosters teamwork, self-discipline and good citizenship along with a drug-free lifestyle.
She was selected earlier this year as the group’s Division Six Adult Volunteer of the Year for her work with the local Miramar unit, which includes 35 area youths. The unit is one of more than 260 units throughout the country serving nearly 7,500 youths in the U.S. along with affiliate programs in Japan and other countries.
“My parents were often busy working. I knew that there were kids, like me, who were looking for that role model. I want to be the person they can come to when they need guidance,” said Righthouse, who also served as a volunteer adviser for the Police Cadet Program and has been a Girl Scout leader for 13 years.
Righthouse, who lives in Rancho Penasquitos, started in the Young Marines program as an adult volunteer and female adviser in October 2013 shortly after her daughter, Sophia Righthouse, joined the unit. Within two years she became executive officer. Along with those duties, she served as battalion adjutant, regimental adjutant and Division 6 virtual training officer.
“The Police Department definitely set me on the path to working with kids,” said Righthouse, who served 10 years in the Child Abuse Unit and another 10 years in the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, where she did outreach work with schools and other youth groups. Read More in the San Diego Union-Trinune >>
By Linda McIntosh
May 13, 2021 in The San Diego Union-Tribune