Peter Wright, 68
Living only four miles from Mantoloking, N.J. -- a storied beach town where Richard Nixon and James Gandolfini summered -- Wright was devastated when Hurricane Sandy reduced the community of 528 homes by 200.
To pitch in, he temporarily housed friends rendered homeless. Then, drawing on his financial expertise, he set up a series of town meetings at which an architect, a lawyer, and other professionals answered residents' questions about insurance claims and other aspects of reconstructing their homes. "Now there is real rebuilding," he says. "I hear it and see it."
"A shocking number of people neglected to keep records or make sure their insurance was appropriate," says Wright.