John Stallknecht John Stallknecht volunteers at the Kenneth C. Aitken Senior and Community Center, where he teaches the Caning and Furniture Refinishing class on Mondays. He began nearly 10 years ago, and teaches students how to cane antique chairs and benches, as well as refinish old furniture, family heirlooms and thrift store bargains. With John’s leadership and positive attitude the class has grown steadily over the years, it has a casual atmosphere where participants socialize and discuss current events. John volunteers over 125 hours per year; he is very dependable and rarely misses a day.
John is also a master ventriloquist who has donated many performances to both of the senior centers at special events. The “dolls” were made by John himself and he has some interesting characters. ‘Aunt Hattie’ is a cougar in her eighties looking for a husband. ‘Orville Stump’ is a country boy who is not the sharpest tool in the shed. ‘Howard Crump’ is a grumpy old man. The performances are based on conversations John has with the “dolls” about the latest news and gossip in their lives. Everyone loves the program, which is full of laughs.
During the holidays, John has volunteered as Santa Claus passing out candy canes and taking pictures with the seniors. In addition to his volunteer service with the District, John also volunteers for Redwood Christian Community Church in Castro Valley.
John goes above and beyond to give back to his community assisting youth and senior adults alike. We are very lucky to have John as a part of the HARD family.