Straight Up Snowmass: Involvement is the name of the game
Editor’s Note: Straight Up Snowmass is a series spotlighting locals who live and work in Snowmass Village. It appears weekly in the Snowmass Sun during offseason.
For Caroline Gibson, being involved in her community is just the norm. As administrative director at the Snowmass Chapel and a member of two nonprofit boards and of the Snowmass Village Rotary Club, she’s one busy lady. And, she’s one of the younger faces in most of those organizations. Whether it’s what she’s going for or not, she is an exception to the rule that young people in Snowmass don’t get involved in civic organizations.
When and why did you move to Snowmass Village?
I moved to Snowmass Village after college in June of 2009. I grew up on the coast of southern Maine, about an hour north of Boston. I started skiing as a child in the mountains of New Hampshire and family winter vacations were trips West to ski. For two summers during high school, I spent a month at a ranch high in the mountains of Wyoming. I have always loved the mountains. Moving to Colorado after college to live and work in a ski town and partake in the wonderful mountain lifestyle was a dream come true.
What do you do?
I am the administrative director at the Snowmass Chapel. That position is unique. Every day is different and challenging, which I love, and I work with a fantastic team of people. I have a variety of responsibilities varying from marketing to finance; HR to overseeing the buildings and grounds; to managing the cemetery.
What are your passions?
I find great joy in helping others. My work at the chapel has fostered many friendships and contacts, both through people who come to the chapel and people in the valley. Many times, I can help people connect with resources otherwise unavailable to them. It is one of the most rewarding parts of my job to see someone who can find success and fulfillment in a need they may have and to help start that path for them. My favorite activities are skiing, hiking, camping and hut trips, biking, standup paddleboarding — and taking my Labradoodle, Magnolia, on my adventures. As much as I enjoy traveling, I love coming back home to Snowmass Village.
What organizations are you involved in?
I serve on the Snowmass Rodeo Board and the Little Red Schoolhouse Board. I enjoy being an active member of Snowmass Village Rotary Club. Since moving here, I have helped plan and organize the Snowmass Community Thanksgiving Potluck Dinner each year.
What makes Snowmass special to you?
Snowmass Village is a wonderful, tight-knit community. Bumping into familiar faces at the post office and becoming friends with the bank teller are just a few of the benefits of living in a small town in my mind. I find the uniqueness of offseason wonderful and refreshing. Now to the best part: the outdoor activities and the lifestyle! Hiking after work, skiing on my days off and exploring nature’s playground right in my backyard are what make living here so special.
What motivates you to get involved?
Growing up, we did a lot of service projects and volunteering as a family. It quickly became a part of my life at a young age. It was natural for me to continue that throughout college and when I moved to Snowmass, as well. Giving back and getting involved in the community gives me a sense of accomplishment, allows me to meet new people and reminds me of my wonderful family. My parents set a wonderful example by being involved in countless nonprofits and a variety of organizations. Being involved in organizations or community activities for anyone provides much more than you think while you are participating. I think about the Tough Mudder I participated in (two weeks ago). It was so much more than the grueling course over mountains and obstacles — it was about the people in the crowd, the wounded warriors participating, the teamwork and camaraderie, the people who were unable to participate and the sacrifices so many make for others.
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“We’ve got all of these great things going on in (Base Village),” Andy Gunion, managing partner of East West Partners, said to council. “But it is not sustainable if we don’t get the rest of this village built and we’re not going to build it under a plan that makes no sense.”