I was born in New Orleans, Louisiana -- the nth generation of my family to do so. I spent my middle school and high school days on the Mississippi Gulf Coast in a small village called Pass Christian. One only hears about this town when a major hurricane hits it, particularly those sassy girls: Betsy, Camille, and Katrina.
I went to Mississippi State University and majored in Electrical Engineering and was a co-op student with NASA in Huntsville, Alabama.
I transferred to UTK in 1968 and graduated in 1970 -- two months before my son, Joe Parks, was born. Getting in and out of those molded desks at UTK was a real challenge.
After graduation, I worked for Union Carbide (who didn't in those days) as an Instrumentation Engineer. In 1976, I took a position as a Project Manager of Engineering and Construction for the D.O.E. I retired in 2003 with my last job being Federal Project Director and team leader for a major depleted uranium processing project.
I married my super cute husband, Pat, in 1992. We live in Knox County but the heart is still in Oak Ridge.
My first League meeting was in 1970 where I was escorted by Elizabeth Arnold and Jean Cole. At that meeting, I was totally captivated by the energy and intelligence of the League women: Nancy Thoma, Grace Tench, Kenny Wymer, Mimi Rosenthal, Barbara Landau, Mary Adler, Diantha Pare, to name just a very few. Been smitten ever since.
Hobbies include grandmothering, civic work, hiking, traveling, checking off bucket list items, cooking, gardening, clay work, and whatever trouble Pat manages to get me into.
Civic stuff has included the Board of the Roane State Foundation, President of various technical organizations, Co-President of an immigrant ally group in Knoxville, Leadership Oak Ridge, past president of other organizations such as the Oak Ridge Art Center, mentoring high school students, etc.
I am the proud Mom of Joe Parks. He has his PhD in Electrical Engineering and works for Intel. His wife, Sharie, has her PhD in medical genetics. We have two adorable grandchildren: Anna (13) and Eli (10).
First Vice-President Betsy Smith
I was born in New Haven, Conn., and by age six, thanks to WW II, had lived in Cheyenne, Wyoming, Seattle, Washington, and Colorado Springs, Colorado. After WWII my family lived in Seattle, except for one year in Munich, Germany. I met my husband, David, in high school. After graduation, I attended Stanford University for two years, and then transferred to Whitman College in Walla Walla, Washington to be with David. We were married the summer before our senior year. After receiving a B.A. in elementary education, I taught 3rd grade in Ithaca, New York, while David was a graduate student at Cornell University.
In 1962, David's job at ORNL brought us to Oak Ridge. I substituted in the Oak Ridge Schools and volunteered at Planned Parenthood and Recording for the Blind until our daughter, Ellen, was born in l964. That year I also joined the League, and from l965 to l972, had various board positions, ending as president in l971. In the Fall of l972, our family left for two years in Vienna, Austria, while David worked for the International Atomic Energy Agency. Our second daughter, Sarah, was born two months after our return from Vienna. In l978, I went back to work and spend the next 30 years as a legal assistant for Attorney Dorothy Stulberg, retiring in 2009.
I remained a league member over the years, but only came back on the board this year. My hobbies include ORICL classes, water color, travel, cooking, reading, and bridge.
2nd VP and Special Projects Doris Sklad
Secretary Kay Moss
Treasurer Janis Williams
Janis, a native of Oak Ridge, graduated from UT with a degree in nutrition so long ago that most of what she remembers is now out of date. She and her husband Don have two married daughters and two delightful granddaughters. When she is not walking, working on her two-liter abs, or contorting herself into beginner yoga positions, she stays busy letting her cats in and out and pretending to do housework. Janis considers herself to be a semi-professional volunteer, having worked with Planned Parenthood, the YWCA, CASA, the Free Medical Clinic, and various youth related organizations. She enjoys traveling, reading murder mysteries, and working Japanese number puzzles.
Voter Newsletter Editor Emily Jernigan
A League member since arriving in Oak Ridge in 1981, I have been producing the Voter newsletter for the past 6 years. The League's work with local, state, and national issues inspires me because I am a passionate advocate for fair elections, voting rights, and an informed electorate. One of the things I love about working on the Voter is that board members are diligent about submitting their work to me on time, or even ahead of time -- a rare treat for an editor!
Besides the Voter I produce Branches, the newsletter of the UT Arboretum Society, and the Journal of the Holly Society of America, an international organization promoting interest in and research about holly. When not at my computer with these and other tasks, I am an active community volunteer, including with the Arboretum Society and WUOT. For the last 10 years I have been a member of the Oak Ridge Breakfast Rotary Club, serving in a number of capacities. Currently I am president-elect of our club and am honored to have been entrusted with that position.
I'm married to Charlie Jernigan who shares my passion for community involvement. He's chair of the Oak Ridge Land Bank, a housing commissioner, a Noon Rotarian, and president of the Arboretum Society. My eyes and my heart light up when in the presence of my 5 grandchildren, ages 4 to 7. Although they live in Nashville and St. Louis, we get to see them fairly regularly, though never enough! For fun we travel and get together with friends. We love being a part of Oak Ridge, and are delighted at all the exciting developments happening here now.
Education Committee Director Brenda Parker
Brenda Parker moved to Oak Ridge in 2005 from Los Alamos, New Mexico. She joined LWVOR in 2006 as a way of becoming involved in her new community. Since joining the League, Brenda has served as chairman of the TN Health Care and Immigration studies. She served as secretary for two years and as co-president for two years. She is currently the chairman of the Education Committee. Prior to moving to Tennessee she was, at various times, a teacher, substitute teacher, market research assistant, data analyst and stay-at-home mom in New Mexico and Arizona.
Voter Services Committee Director Claudia Lever
I have been a member of the Oak Ridge league since the 70's. I really appreciate that the League covers a large range of issues related to government policy and civic affairs. I find it the best way to keep informed, especially since we study issues before taking a position. I have served the local league as president, treasurer, voter service chairman and on program committees. Currently I am voter service/ election issues chairman. I am also treasurer of the state league.
I also serve on the Oak Ridge Planning Commission, take ORICL classes, and volunteer at my church.
Public Relations/Media Advisor Cleva Marrow
A native of Western Kentucky, I came to Oak Ridge as a bride in 1944 and waded through the mud, lined up for rationed sugar, hunted for meat everywhere and helped smuggle in liquor, in the early years of the Secret City. I worked at the Y-2 Plant, crunching numbers to determine the quantity of U-235 produced by the calutrons for the first atomic bomb, Little Boy. After the calutron operation shut down, I worked at X-10, then managed by Monsanto Chemical, as secretary to the Project Engineer, who led the planning for a new national laboratory.
Retiring to raise a family that grew to four children, two girls and two boys, with my late husband, George, I did all the "mommy" things + Girl Scout leader, Cub Scout mother, PTA, etc. + for 26 years. At that point, when my youngest was 16, I decided to complete my degree, getting my feet wet at Roane State and graduating from the University of Tennessee in 1980 with a B.S. in Journalism, news reporting and editing sequence. And thus began the second half of my life!
After working for the News-Sentinel throughout the mid-80s, covering Oak Ridge and Anderson County, I retired again to go freelance, then became a professional volunteer. I guess that's still going, since I have been serving as Public Relations/Media Advisor on the Oak Ridge League Board for two years.
I came to the League late, though I had been recruited in the late 1950s by Mary Ann Gross. I finally joined many years later when Diantha Pare`, whom I had gotten to know through my passion for gardening, invited me. Since, I have come to respect and appreciate greatly the work of the League, especially the positions the League takes and works to achieve on public policy issues, voter education, environmental issues, social justice and much more.
Prior to the League, my professional volunteer service included 25 years on the Board of Directors of Historic Ramsey House in Knoxville in numerous capacities: pro bono public relations director, director of interpretation, personnel director, exhibit curator and more usual volunteer roles such as grantwriter, newsletter editor, chair of the summer music program. During some of those years, I was also serving on the Oak Ridge Art Center Board of Directors as newsletter editor, vice president and president, and chair of fund development, initiating the annual fund drive, the corporate partnership program and the legislative advocacy program.
In addition to working with the League, I am a member of the Mental Health Ministry Team at my church and the Steering Committee of the Women's Interfaith Dialogue of Oak Ridge, and doing PR work for all.
My greatest joy and deepest care are my children (who are beginning to retire, I can't believe it); my wonderful grandchildren, total six, all of whom have satisfying careers (or preparing); and my three beautiful great-grandchildren + soccer-playing, super student Liz (14), four-year-old livewire Thaddeus and "can't-be-still-a-minute" Colin, 20 months - and another on the way!
|Mary Ann Reeves and Patrick Bryan||2014-2016|
|Norman Mulvenon, Anne Adamson, and Peter Scheffler||2012-2013|
|Brenda Parker and Jo Ann Garrett||2011-2012|
|Norman Mulvenon and Brenda Parker||2010-2011|
|Marty Adler-Jasny and Norman Mulvenon||2009-2010|
|Marty Adler-Jasny and Karleen Richter||2007-2009|
|Robin Toth and Mary Uziel||2005-2006|
|Janis Williams and Margaret Beams||2004-2005|
|Robin Biloski and Mary Helen Rose||2002-2003|
|Dorothy Gilpatrick and Jesse Noritake||1999-2000|
|Joyce Carpenter and Susan Gawarecki||1997-1998|
|Diantha Pare' and Barbara Moon||1995-1997|
|Mary Ann Gross||1973-1975|