Are you wondering who sits on the Caneille Regional Development Board? We recently interviewed Rebecca Zornow. Rebecca has been part of the CRDF board since the beginning (2006).
Tell us about yourself: where are you from, background (work and school) and one-two fun facts about yourself. I grew up in Appleton, WI and attended Valley New School and Lawrence University. What do you do with a double major in English and Art History? You join the Peace Corps, go to Swaziland for two years, and and start a library and art club. Since coming back to Appleton, I’ve worked at a variety of educational and art organizations. I’m a mother of three children–Lydia, Madeline, and Pierce–and married to one great guy–Oliver Zornow.
How did you hear about CRDF? I was there at the beginning in 2006! I hosted the first CRDF (though we didn’t have a name back then) fundraiser. It was an Arts and Craft Sale. We got wonderful volunteer help from our friends and their families.
What is your position on the board? Length of position with CRDF? I’ve been on the board for the last decade, serving currently as the Board President. Recently we’ve performed a strategic plan (you can read more on our ‘About Us’ page of our website) and been putting a focus on the CORE Support Team (a neat program building a stronger connection between our donors and the school in Caneille, also on our website).
What do you think makes CRDF unique? I love how it’s two groups of people coming together to create something amazing. It’s an incredibly personal organization. When I give financially to CRDF, I know those funds have a direct impact on students and teachers in Caneille, many of whom I’ve personally met and worked with.
Why did you choose to sit on the CRDF board? I’m passionate about education and I believe its the key to lifting people up out of poverty. Many of our students face extreme challenges in their lives, but I am always stunned to hear students talking about what their schooling has done already in their young lives. One family reported how they are able to take part in fair transactions and sign contracts because their child has learned basic writing and math skills. One of our teachers regularly does training for other schools, increasing the quality of education in the larger area. The work we do changes families and communities.
Anything else that you think we should know about you? I also volunteer at the St. Elizabeth Hospital Foundation and the Bergstrom-Mahler Museum of Glass. Some of my favorite pastimes are getting lost in 800 page books (Hello Stephen King and Diana Gabaldon), traveling, taking in art exhibitions, and hiking.