is an educator, social worker, mentor, and healer. Professional work with non-profits and applied research spans prevention and intervention of gender-based violence; youth and family development; and entertainment for social change. Carliene is nearing five years as Assistant Director of Admission at her undergraduate alma mater: College of Saint Benedict and Saint John’s University (MN). She holds a Masters Degree in Social Work from the University of Texas at El Paso and aspires to a PhD in the near future. Singing and songwriting with her beloved Central Minnesota women’s choral group, Mettekor, are among her greatest joys.
DISABILITY TO LIMITLESS ABILITY
To achieve success, do ordinary things extraordinarily well. From childhood, Carliene, did her best to live this out – playing sports, doing Girl Scouts, being active at church, getting good grades, and volunteering. Her work ethic led to some extraordinary achievements, including prestigious high school and college awards. Many people described her as talented, well-connected, and successful, but Carliene felt increasingly alone and ashamed. Ordinary things became impossible and life-threatening illness enveloped her. Today, after a decade of uncontrolled ups and disabling downs, Carliene is managing an incurable chronic condition. Embracing her diagnosis, she confronts the stigma surrounding mental illness and is accomplishing extraordinary things. Carliene’s truth inspires: even when challenged in doing ordinary things, we can achieve the extraordinary, because of all that we are!