Top 100 - 2011

Todd Shea

In 2005, a tragic earthquake struck Pakistan and devastated the country. Eighty thousand lives were lost and countless others left in disarray amongst the rubble. Irish American Todd Shea was among many volunteers who traveled to Pakistan after the quake to assist in any way they could. It’s there he has been since. Shea established a hospital in Chikar, a remote village, and named it Comprehensive Disaster Relief Services or CDRS. He continues to run it. Last year when Haiti was struck with tragedy, Shea was in America on a fundraising tour for his hospital in Chikar. He cut the tour short immediately to travel to Haiti, where he worked for six weeks aiding relief efforts.

Shea began his incredible life of humanitarian aid in New York, on September 11th, 2001, when as fate would have it, he had scheduled a show as a budding singer-songwriter at Manhattan’s legendary CBGB’s nightclub. On hearing of the attacks on the Twin Towers, Shea emptied his music equipment from his van and drove into the smoke of Ground Zero to help. Since that day, Shea has never stopped his inspiring work. He traveled to New Orleans in the wake of Katrina, to Sri Lanka after the 2004 tsunami, and for years now has continued his work in Pakistan. With little to no experience as a health care worker before he began his humanitarian efforts, Shea has recruited doctors to work for hours on end. He told The New York Times in an interview, “Others are more qualified, but I’m the one who’s here.” It certainly wouldn’t hurt to have more like him.