Dick Winters has made a career out of begging.

"Will work for food," he laughs.With beautiful white hair, a quick smile and warm sense of humor, it's easy to see why so many people have a hard time telling him no when he comes asking. Then again, maybe they have a hard time saying no because he's always asking for someone else.

It is that talent for getting people to give that's made him so valuable to so many organizations. Just mention his name and people will tell you all kinds of stories about Winters and his never-ending generosity.

"He just truly cares," said Anne Nelsen, director of the Salt Lake Detention Center. Nelsen knows firsthand how effective Winters is at raising money and raising spirits.

"He singlehandedly, literally raised the money to construct the chapel here," Nelsen said. "There were a lot of wonderful contributions (like $20,000 worth of architecture work), but Dick made it happen.'

In addition to spearheading the fund-raising effort to build the chapel, Winters has spent hundreds of hours volunteering at the detention center. It was his concern for two boys that led him to the detention center more than 20 years ago.

Winters was an LDS bishop and two of the teens in his ward were serving time in detention. He visited them regularly and eventually decided the center needed a real chapel. After finding "some wonderful people" to fund the chapel, it was dedicated in 1983.

But finding donors for the chapel wasn't Winters' first encounter with fund raising.

As the executive director of the Community Services Council, he's responsible for raising money and collecting food for the Utah Food Bank as well as providing dozens of services for the poor.

"It's rather difficult work," he said. "You don't find a lot of people lining up to go out and do it."

The upsides of soliciting donations are helping people and meeting people who are willing to help.

Winters sits on the Youth Corrections Board, but Nelsen said he's one executive who mingles with the masses.

"He's never stopped doing his hands-on volunteer work with the kids," she said. Winters said that's so he'll remember who he's working for.

"If you don't keep in touch with what you're trying to do, on the level where the difference is made, you can forget," he said.

Nelsen said he does a lot "for a population a lot of people aren't sympathetic to."

"He brings his Polaroid camera and takes their pictures. He tells them how lovely they are, and he means it."

Winters said he takes their pictures to help them begin to build a positive self-image.

"The greatest message you can give them is that somebody does care," he said. "It makes their lives a little happier. Many of them are throwaway kids. They've never felt like they belonged or that they're wanted."

"There are some great kids out there - some damaged kids - but they're all going to grow up and be part of society. It would be really neat if they are a contributing part of society."