My educational background includes receiving both my Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees in Social Work from the University of Kentucky, while working full time and raising a child. I feel that I gave my daughter a true example that no one is ever too old to learn and that a good education is one of the most important things we can have.
My professional career included serving as the Safety and Disaster Director for the Bluegrass Area Chapter American Red Cross for 20 years. In that capacity, I trained thousands of students in first aid and cpr, trained over 500 people to become instructors in both first aid and cpr and served as the Job Director or Family Services Director in over 500 Disasters throughout Kentucky and a number of other states. I was also trained as a National Instructor in Administering a Small Disaster Operation and provided this training in a number of states.
I retired from Red Cross after 20 years and was hired by the Lexington Fayette County Health Department as a Communicable Disease Investigator which involved partner tracing for a number of highly contagious diseases, including HIV.
I’ve always enjoyed staying busy, and creative so I volunteered with Habitat For Humanity for over 17 years, including serving on their Board of Directors; volunteering with one of our local hospitals for over 9 years, and getting involved with a few friends in a quilting group. In 2015, we went to our local Quilters Day Out and discovered Quilts of Valor!! A whole new world opened up for many of us!!! I personally fell in love with the mission of QOV, but did not feel I was qualified to become a member until I could improve my skills. I joined Central Kentucky QOV in 2017 (thanks to Rita Hardman encouraging me and providing additional training); helped our Group Leader with award ceremonies in surrounding communities, and in 2021, when Nancy decided to leave the State Coordinator’s position, I became the Kentucky State Coordinator – one month before COVID-19 hit our country.
I come from a very long line of veterans including being the wife, now widow, of my Air Force husband (1960-1966), and generations of military members from my dad, uncles, grandfathers and others that I’ve traced back to both sides of the Civil War. I love honoring our veterans and active duty service members as I want them to know our appreciation and thankfulness for their service and sacrifices.