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Rusty Boruff, founder of nonprofit One Eighty, submits letter of resignation

Rusty received the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis Award for Outstanding Public Service at the 49th Annual Jefferson Awards on Sept. 30, 2021.

DAVENPORT, Iowa — Editor's Note: The video above is from Feb. 11, 2021. 

After 14 years of helping those battling homelessness and addiction, One Eighty founder Rusty Boruff is going to focus on taking care of himself and his family.

On Friday, One Eighty posted Rusty's letter of resignation to Facebook to announce his departure. His resignation takes effect on Monday, March 21. 

In the letter, Rusty recounts his own journey from a jail cell to his position as executive director of the nonprofit. 

"I have given everything I possibly have to this calling," Rusty says in the letter. "That road has been filled with moments I'll never forget. Changed lives, families reunited and communities changed. Our team hasn't just been part of that alone though, we've also inspired thousands to do the same and to be engaged in their communities." 

Rusty's passion to help the "down and out" has received national recognition. Last September, he received the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis Award for Outstanding Public Service at the 49th Annual Jefferson Awards. 

He was also WQAD's 2021 Jefferson Awards Finalist

RELATED: One Eighty to open new women's housing facility in Davenport

Throughout his journey at One Eighty, Rusty had the opportunity to serve with people who have become a part of his family. 

"Words can't possibly describe how much this group means to me personally," Rusty's letter says. "The culture we've created together isn't something that comes naturally. It's built with love, trust, perseverance, hard times and good times. We call it the One Eighty Family." 

One Eighty is all about life change. Hitting the reset button. And giving people the space they need to heal and...

Posted by One Eighty on Friday, March 11, 2022

However, Rusty said the weight of crisis ministry is "something that I knew was becoming too much" to bear. 

"The weight of crisis ministry is a weight unlike any other," the letter says. "I haven't always carried that weight well and have made plenty of mistakes in that walk. Every day, I make life and death decisions that will directly affect the lives of those we serve, and that weight continues to grow. Today, I am tired and I need a break." 

Rusty's letter also touches on the stroke he had back in August 2021 and how he prayed to God to let him see his wife and kids one more time. That day began a "journey of perspective" for him. He reflected on how he hasn't always taken time for himself. 

"I can't remember a vacation I ever had; nights and weekends often were associated with One Eighty," he says in the letter. "Moving forward the next few months, my focus is rejuvenating and loving my beautiful wife and kids." 

In the Facebook post, the nonprofit thanks Rusty for the last 14 years, saying, "Rusty will always be our founder and our friend." 

"You’ve helped to build a beacon of hope in our community," the post says. "And thank you to the rest of you who are committed to walking with One Eighty in the next phase of this adventure. We trust God to show us the way."

RELATED: 2021 JEFFERSON AWARDS: Rusty Boruff - Living Proof of Doing a "One Eighty"

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