Founding Member 2003
Carol started in the workforce at age 15 as a pretzel twister, and even in her youth, worked her way into restaurant management positions, and established her own house cleaning business on the side. When she finally had a chance to attend college, she studied business and accounting, then took an elective stage management class from an inspiring drama teacher who insisted she also understudy. That leap to the front of the house, she says, unexpectedly caused her “soul to smile.”
As cutting edge as improvisation and theater was in Chicago in the early 80s, her passion for Shakespeare brought her to the local renaissance faire. In that one summer, she discovered the fabulous artistic community there, that 35 years later, she still calls family.
After her third year working faire, a stage combat rehearsal accident landed her on her face and cost her all of her front teeth. Community fundraisers helped her keep her apartment, and people she barely knew came to her support. This was the key to her future path.
Within five years, she had met the musician of her dreams and was on the road performing, using her skills directing and managing at Festivals. As she worked shows in California, Texas, New York, Virginia, became crafts coordinator at the Ohio Renaissance Festival, entertainment director at the Florida Renaissance Festival, and production consultant at the Tennessee Renaissance Festival, she gained valuable insight regarding the regional and cultural distinctions of our community.
When the community rallied strongly behind one of its own–a little girl diagnosed with leukemia and her family, Carol witnessed the outpouring of support and was moved. She watched as musicians compiled the Concert for a Queen CD and the name RESCU was born.
She was there at the very beginning. Hearing there was movement to start a charity to help with medical issues in the community, she knew she needed to be a part of that, and was part of a three-person team who made that dream a reality.
Through networking and hard work RESCU grew and through those years Carol served as Vice President and President. When it was determined the organization needed to hire an Executive Director –the first staff position– in 2010, she was granted that role after a nationwide search.
Carol does continue performing, is the keeper of two happily laying chickens and a formidable garden, and is proud to be alcohol and tobacco free. RESCU now has 5 staff members Carol oversees, 14 Board members she works with daily, and too many dedicated volunteers to count. Being a founding member of RESCU is one of her greatest honors, and her love for the organization and the community it serves is at the root of every step she takes.