Member since: 15+ years
Hometown: West Bend, Iowa
Aaron Putze was born and raised a Catholic in West Bend, Iowa (home of the Grotto of the Redemption). His advice to young and future Knights: step up and do one thing.
After graduating from high school, Aaron attended the University of Northern Iowa. There he served as editor of the student newspaper, The Northern Iowan, and Student Government Vice President. Aaron graduated with a degree in Communications-Public Relations minoring in Journalism.
Upon graduation, he went to work for a publishing company in Grundy Center, Iowa. In 1994, Aaron went to work for the Iowa Farm Bureau in West Des Moines, serving in a variety of communications, public relations and management roles. In 2010, he joined the staff of the Iowa Soybean Association, currently serving as Sr. Dir. of Information & Education. He’s also the author of two books: Chuck Long: Destined for Greatness and YOU Are Destined for Greatness (the latter is a how-to book devoted to personal and professional leadership and growth).
Aaron and his wife Crystal will celebrate 20 years of marriage in September. They have three children: Garrett, Grant and Jaelyn.
He attended Sts. Peter and Paul’s catholic school and has celebrated his Catholic faith his whole life and loves the church. Though Aaron never had a family member of the Knights before him, he is a proud member.
“It was an organization that I felt that I should be involved in because of the way it supports the priesthood and the parish and to have fellowship with other members of the parish,” Aaron said. “I like to be involved, volunteer and get engaged and look forward to getting more involved in the council.”
Aaron enjoys volunteering his time wherever he can for the Knights including the yearly fish fries and tootsie roll drives. In addition, Aaron enjoys serving as a lector and usher.
Parishes function because of volunteers, he says.
“If every member of parish does one thing, you can accomplish great things,” Aaron said. “I just try to do my part to support the parish beyond being just a member.”
Being a Knight has given Aaron the opportunity to also teach the importance of volunteering to his children.
“I enjoy bringing them to events to help out,” Aaron said. “Whether that be tootsie rolls outside of Walmart and Hy-Vee or helping serve food and assist patrons at fish fries, it is important to also share volunteerism and teach that to the next generation.”
Aaron says involvement begins by volunteering to do just one thing.
“Not everybody can be the Grand Knight or hold a major leadership post. But everybody can land a hand to move one project forward. Doing so creates a ripple effect that can help the council be its most successful and help the most people.”