I grew up in a working class family on Peaks Island, in Portland, Maine, attended public schools and graduated from Gorham State Teacher’s College. My family moved to Rochester, New Hampshire in 1961. I met Paul there and following our graduations, we married and moved to England where he fulfilled his US Airforce commitment. Upon return, we chose Wolfeboro to set up his dental practice and moved here in 1967 to make our home and raise our four children.
In the years I was home raising our children, I was actively involved in the community through church committees, charitable campaigns, and our children’s activities including nursery school and scouting. In 1974, after a Needs of Women Survey identified a critical need for affordable quality child care, I worked to establish the Wolfeboro Area Children’s Center. I was the Executive Director for 24 years and established seven programs to serve the childcare, early education for able and disabled children, and family service needs, regardless of income. One of these was the first certified mainstream preschool special education program in the State of New Hampshire. My work helped provide a more stable workforce for our economy.
Upon retirement I continued my involvement in church and community while also focusing on extended family needs. I was involved with the Friends of Families of Carroll County, which identified a critical lack of affordable workforce housing. I was deeply concerned about the issue, having seen many of my staff at the Children’s Center struggle with finding housing they could afford. I served on an ad hoc housing committee of the Wolfeboro Planning Board which later led to the establishment of the Eastern Lakes Region Housing Coalition, of which I was the founding chair. The coalition, with a dedicated multi-community board of directors, continues its work in 14 regional communities, supporting efforts to remove barriers to workforce housing, to support the need for a stable workforce and for quality housing for our families. Harriman Hill was built in Wolfeboro as a model of Conservation Cluster development of workforce housing. Paul has been the driving force for the construction of the Cotton Valley Trail which will finally be completed by fall of 2017.
1978 Wolfeboro Citizen of the Year
1980 Outstanding Supervisor–Summer Youth Employment Program.
1988 Governor’s Proclamation of Excellence in Management of Community Development Block Grant (for construction of new building down town).
1988 NH Corporate Fund 1st. Annual Award for Excellence in Non-Profit Management
1995 1st Annual Administrator Award for Excellence in Center Management, presented by the NH Association for the Education of Young Children
1997 Paul Harris Fellow, Foundation of Rotary International, in recognition of outstanding community service.
1999 Governor’s Citation for achievements & 23 years of dedication meeting community needs through development of the Children’s Center and other child & family services.
2005 General Wolfe Award – Wolfeboro Area Chamber of Commerce for service to community – improving quality of life in the area
2013 NeighborWorks America – Dorothy Richardson Award– (one of six given nationally) for Extraordinary leadership & dedication to creating healthy and sustainable communities in which children and their families can prosper and thrive.
2013 National President’ s Award – for strengthening our nation and making a difference through volunteer services
BS Degree Education – Gorham State Teachers College, 1963 (now University of Southern Maine)
Graduate Courses in counseling, history, early special education and administration
Workshops attended: Administrative, Management Styles, Leadership Training, Personnel Management, Fund Raising, Child Abuse, Family Violence, Child Development, Early Childhood Education, Family Services, Computer Accounting, Serving Children with Multiple Handicaps, Laws Affecting the Handicapped, Employment Laws, Blended Families, etc.
Presented at: Regional Rural Network Conference on Community Awareness and Support for Human Services, NH Volunteer Conference, With One Voice Conference, New Hampshire Child Care Association Workshops, etc.
1974-1997 Founding Executive Director of the Wolfeboro Area Children’s Center.
- Group Child Care Program
- Early Childhood Programs
- Family Day Care Network
- Early Intervention Program
- Pre-School Special Education Program (First state certified mainstream program In NH)
- Social Services Programs
- Parent Education Programs and Support Groups
Nationally accredited by the National Association for the Education of Children in 1995 and re-accredited in 1997
Relevant community & statewide services:
Brownie & Cub Scout Leader, 8 years
First Congregational Church served on: Christian Education, Finance and Long Range Planning Committees, served twice as Council Vice Moderator and Moderator and Planning and Construction Committees for new church construction.
St. Cecelia’s: Co-lead High School Youth Group for several years
Governor Wentworth Regional School District Committees:
- Individualization of Curriculum
- Vocational Education Craft Committee on Child Care
Town of Wolfeboro:
- Several different Master Plans including Human Services Element, Land Use Advisory, and Housing Chapter committees
- Traffic Safety Study/Pickering Corner
- Workforce Housing Study Committee
State of New Hampshire:
- Human Service Commissioners Advisory on reorganization of the Department of Health and Human Services
- NH Developmental Disabilities Council Advisory Committee
- NH Child Care Association — Secretary, Treasurer and President
Volunteer local board work
- NH Charitable Foundation/Lakes Region Board
- Stanley Wright Museum, Board of Directors
- President of the Friends of Families Coalition in Carroll County
- Founding Chair of the Eastern Lakes Region Housing Coalition, construction of Harriman Hill workforce housing development and community education agency – board member 2003 – present
- Trustee for the Josiah Brown Trust