Kudos and Kindness from Aspen Times readers (Jan. 27 2019) | AspenTimes.com

Kudos and Kindness from Aspen Times readers (Jan. 27 2019)

The importance of school board members

January is School Board Recognition Month, and the Roaring Fork Schools want to thank our board members for their commitment and contributions to our schools. Our board members volunteer countless evenings to learning about big and small issues so that they can make decisions on complex educational and social issues that affect our entire school community. It’s an important but tough job that is done without any compensation.

Every year, we invite those who benefit from the time, talent, and passion our board members contribute for the betterment of our schools to help us thank them. This year, we invited members of our school community to submit their appreciations for board members Jen Rupert, Shane Larson, Mary Elizabeth Geiger, Matt Hamilton and Jennifer Scherer. While there were too many to include here, we did want to share some examples of what our staff members appreciated.

From Glenwood Springs Middle School teacher Autumn Rivera: “Dear Board, I so appreciate all you do to support us teachers. You listen and really try to understand what our needs are. … I admire all the time you give to making RFSD the best it can be. Thanks again for all you do. We are better because of it!”

From Roaring Fork High School teacher Adam Carballeira: “Thank you so much for all the time and energy you give to the kids and the future of our valley and world. On behalf of my family, school and community, we really appreciate it. As a recent inductee into the IBB process, I have a new appreciation for the level of detail and consideration that goes on ‘behind the scenes.’”

From RFSD staff member Michael Logan: “I can’t begin to imagine the depth and the breadth of the work involved in being a school board member, and it’s even more difficult to imagine the weight of the responsibility of your work. Thank you for all that you do, and especially for all the unnoticed and under-appreciated elements of your work.”

Thanks to everyone who shared their thoughtful appreciations. If you see a board member, please remember to thank them for all that they do for our school community.

Executive team

Roaring Fork Schools

Aspen Sister Cities thanks its supporters

As youth coordinators for the local middle schools and Aspen High School, we’d like to acknowledge the numerous individuals and organizations in our community who support these yearly student exchanges for Aspen Sister Cities.

A huge thank-you to: Aspen Skiing Co., Four Mountain Sports, Gene Taylor Sports, Incline Ski Shop, Gorsuch, Stapleton Sports, Aspen Recreation Center, Aspen Youth Center, Aspen Center for Environmental Studies, Gwyn’s High Alpine, The Sundeck, Iron Mountain Hot Springs, Aspen Historical Society, Aspen Art Museum, Alpine Bank, Aspen School District, Aspen Community School, Aspen Country Day School, Slow Groovin’ BBQ, Slice Italian Bistro, Slopeside Bowl, Ice Age Discovery Center, Pine Creek Cookhouse, Smuggler Mine and the Rotary Club of Aspen.

We literally could not run these exchanges without your support.

Georgina Levey, Betsy Ann Anastas and Jill Sheeley

Aspen Sister Cities

Buddy up to a great cause I have lived in the valley for over 20 years. I had always thought about becoming a Big Buddy, but didn’t think I had the time, nor a consistent enough schedule to do so. A few years ago I finally decided to take the plunge, and it has been an incredibly great experience for me and for my Buddy.

At first I thought I’d be doing something good for somebody else. I quickly realized that I was gaining as much, or more, from my Little Buddy, as she was gaining from me. Her whole family has embraced me as a family member. I always have a seat at their table. I get to experience life through a young person’s eyes (giggling is almost always a requirement). I’ve gone to so many events that I would never had attended without my Buddy. My Buddy and her family are very grateful for me. They tell me I’m making a difference in her life; I guess I should mention that as well!

I’m also part of a larger, amazing, community of Big and Little Buddies throughout the valley. The case managers at the Buddy Program do an incredible job of matching Big and Little Buddies. January is National Mentoring Month. If you have ever considered becoming a Big (or Little) Buddy, now is the time!

Lara Xaiz


Step up and be a Buddy

In order to feel personally fulfilled and complete, I have always had the strong desire to do for others, realizing my own joy through acts of community. Notably, I began volunteering as early as high school, spending time at an assisted-living home with community members lacking social outlets.

I quickly noticed the thrill and satisfaction that accompanied giving my time and energy to others; unfortunately, that feeling was short-lived. Despite spending years seeking out the best way to make impact over the community and feel personally fulfilled, my search remained unsuccessful through stints of tutoring, volunteer construction and many other activities.

Not until participating in the Buddy Program was I able to see what my previous opportunities were missing: long-lasting impact over both individual and community. Seeing the growth of my Buddy season after season, year after year gave me the sense of fulfillment I needed, while providing the mentorship that my Buddy deserves. Additionally, collaborating with incredible Buddy Program mentors from our community, who work to forge an improved future for dozens of youth that will eventually be leaders in our valley, has brought me a never-before experienced sense of pride.

Living in a small valley, it is crucial that we build our future around the youth that will eventually take care of our generation’s legacy. Isn’t it time you do your part?

Megan Vrono


Generosity made Wintersköl bingo a hit

Circle of Friends offers a great big thank-you to everyone who participated in the fifth annual Wintersköl Bingo For All Ages, held Jan. 13 at the library. Circle of Friends is an Aspen High School service club that connects generations.

It was a true community gathering, connecting locals and visitors of all ages. We offered fellowship, awesome prizes, great food and fun for everyone!

It was heartwarming to receive so many terrific prizes from local businesses. Every single business that I asked agreed to support the event. I am ever grateful for the generosity of our community. It feels wonderful to be a part of such a caring town.

Special thanks to the volunteers, led by the amazing Austin Mickles, Circle of Friends president. Thank you also to Circle of Friends adviser Crichelle Brice, ACRA and the Pitkin County Library.

Colossal thanks to our very generous donors: Taster’s Pizza, Aspen Animal Shelter, Aspen Emporium, Carl’s, City Market, Clark’s Market, 520 Grill, Hair Brainz, Hickory House, Hotel Jerome, Mountain Flowers, Paradise Bakery, Polished Salon, Pyramid Bistro, Sashae, Sundance Liquor and Gifts, Super Relax Spa, The Red Onion, The Snowmass Club and Viceroy Snowmass Hotel.

Barbara Bloemsma


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Letter to the Editor

Kimbo for Aspen City Council


Vote for Kimbo Brown-Schirato for council. She’s the right choice at the right time for Aspen. She listens, works extremely well with others, and she’s effective.

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