The Peace Corps announces top Volunteer-producing states and metropolitan areas in 2016


Washington, D.C. Metro Area reclaims no.1 spot for first time since 2009

WASHINGTON, D.C., Dec. 20, 2016 – The Peace Corps today released its 2016 rankings of the top volunteer-producing states and metropolitan areas across the country. For the first time in six years, Washington-Arlington-Alexandria is the largest metropolitan-area producer of volunteers, bumping longtime leader New York-Northern New Jersey-Long Island to no.2 on the total volunteers list this year. Vermont and California remain no.1 on the respective per capita and total volunteer-producing states lists. Montana has also made impressive strides this year with Missoula, Montana making its first appearance since 2011 in the no.1 spot for top metro areas per capita and The Treasure State climbing to no.3 on the list of top states per capita.

For the first time, the District of Columbia and surrounding states appear on this year’s top states per capita rankings with D.C., Maryland and Virginia sitting at no.2, no.7 and no.8, respectively. This is Maryland’s first time in recent history on both the top states per capita (no.7) and total top states (no.9) lists. Washington-Arlington-Alexandria (no.6) joined fellow rankings newcomers Idaho Falls, Idaho (no.5) and East Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania (no.10) on the top metro areas per capita. This year is the sixth-consecutive year that Washington State has appeared in all four ranking categories and, for the first time, shares the honor this year with Virginia and Maryland.

“During my time leading the Peace Corps, I have seen the tremendous impact that volunteers have when they share

“Whatever path you choose, wherever you go from here, I hope you will find a way to serve others. Service will teach you lessons you can’t learn in any other way, unlock potential you never knew you had, and inspire you to believe – even in the face of the steepest challenges – that one person can truly make a difference.” – Peace Corps director Carrie Hessler-Radelet, at the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences maroon convocation May 12, 2015, at Wells Fargo Arena in Tempe.

Peace Corps Director Carrie Hessler-Radelet.

their unique hometown perspectives with the communities they serve,” said Director Carrie Hessler-Radelet. “Volunteers represent our nation’s rich diversity by coming from all corners of the U.S. They are able to share our nation’s rich cultural heritage with communities around the world, leaving a legacy of peace and friendship that is timeless.”

This year’s rankings follow the launch of a refreshed Peace Corps brand platform that embraces a digitally focused communications approach to make the agency more accessible to all audiences across the United States through the platforms they already use. Sweeping reforms in the application and recruitment system ensure that Peace Corps continues to build a volunteer corps of Americans from all walks of life.

Below find the nation’s top 10 volunteer-producing states and metropolitan areas for 2016.

2016 Top States – Per Capita (# of volunteers per 100,000 residents)

  1. Vermont – 8.3
  2. District of Columbia – 8.2
  3. Montana – 5.0
  4. Washington – 4.5
  5. Minnesota – 4.3
  6. Alaska – 4.3
  7. Maryland – 4.0
  8. Virginia – 3.9
  9. Colorado – 3.9
  10. Oregon – 3.9
  11. Maine – 3.9
  12. Rhode Island – 3.9

2016 Top States – Total Volunteers

  1. California – 916
  2. New York – 449
  3. Virginia – 328
  4. Washington – 317
  5. Florida – 313
  6. Illinois – 301
  7. Pennsylvania – 300
  8. Texas – 277
  9. Maryland – 241
  10. Michigan – 239

2016 Top Metropolitan Areas – Per Capita (# of volunteers per 100,000 residents)

  1. Missoula, MT – 12.3
  2. Burlington-South Burlington, VT – 8.3
  3. Olympia, WA – 8.2
  4. Santa Fe, NM – 6.7
  5. Idaho Falls, ID – 6.4
  6. Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC-VA-MD-WV – 6.3
  7. Boulder, CO – 6.3
  8. Madison, WI – 6.2
  9. Bremerton-Silverdale, WA – 6.2
  10. East Stroudsburg, PA – 6.0
  11. Iowa City, IA – 6.0

2016 Top Metropolitan Areas – Total Volunteers

  1. Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC-VA-MD-WV – 386
  2. New York-Northern New Jersey-Long Island, NY-NJ-PA – 379
  3. Los Angeles-Long Beach-Santa Ana, CA – 283
  4. Chicago-Joliet-Naperville, IL-IN-WI – 245
  5. Minneapolis-St. Paul-Bloomington, MN-WI – 180
  6. Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA – 178
  7. Boston-Cambridge-Quincy, MA-NH – 176
  8. Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington, PA-NJ-DE-MD – 154
  9. Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Marietta, GA – 140
  10. San Francisco-Oakland-Fremont, CA – 136
Current Peace Corps HQ

Current Peace Corps HQ

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  • Makes sense to me; during my peripatetic childhood the longest time we ever lived in a place was in Burlington, VT, and much of that period was spent in South Burlington! My father was travelling the state organizing farmers. It was nirvana for me and my family and must have been an influence!

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