JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (WJHL) – Don Raines has invested 30 years of volunteer service in the Tri-Cities. He turned his passion for helping children in need into a fundraiser that raises hundreds of thousands of dollars every year.

Don Raines is no stranger to people and non-profit organizations in the Tri-Cities. After a successful radio career, Raines followed his passion for helping kids and joined the Ballad Foundation Board, which eventually built Niswonger Children’s Hospital. Raines started the annual Radiothon.

“Well, this community has been very good to me,” Raines said. “I’ve been here all my life, and I’ve had a really good career, business career, have done really well, been well blessed. And when a community gives to you, you’ve got to give back to it. But I think everybody’s got that in them, and sometimes we need a little push or somebody else to push us a little bit to try to help people out.”

When he’s not raising money, Raines is helping kids in other ways. He’s a long-time member of the Johnson City Lions Club, where he serves in a leadership position. The group focuses on sight conservation for less fortunate children and the elderly.

“So it takes kindness to do this,” he said. “And just to be involved, first of all, from a personal point of view, when you see these kids the smiles on their faces, that right there is enough to make it worth it.”

He says helping others is a group effort that often forms friendships.

“That’s a great way to meet people,” he said. “I started off, I didn’t know anybody in the business world, and I got involved in doing stuff like this in different kinds of clubs. Before you know it, you know a lot of people and you’re able to – the more people you know, the more you can help, obviously.”

To Raines, helping people, meeting those who are like-minded, and encouraging others to serve is a privilege.

In his words: Your soul will love you for it.

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