The late Heath Ledger still dominates the cover of People, but on page 88 of the current issue, Burlington's Hal Colston is the star of the magazine's "Heroes Among Us" feature. He's tucked between an article on the formerly anorexic Miss America and a page of colorful gowns spotted at the SAG Awards. Tall, handsome and clad in casual navy shirt and slacks, the 54-year-old founder of Good News Garage does not look out of place among the hot celebs (I peg Morgan Freeman to play him if filmmakers come calling.)
But Colston, of course, has no Hollywood pretensions; he's too busy following his latest altruistic vision: NeighborKeepers, a life-mentoring program for community folks. People raves about his first enterprise, though, and for good reason. "About a thousand cars a year are donated [to Good News Garage]," says Carmen George, GNG's Burlington-based marketing and development manager. The autos are in turn rejuvenated and passed on to needy recipients for the purpose of getting to jobs - one necessary ingredient in getting off welfare. George assures that no one from the Burlington office nominated Colston. "He's helped so many people, it could be anybody," she says.