which was unusually entertaining in spite of—or perhaps because of—the grueling nature of the work. “We would work all day, break for supper, and then get back to work. I remember going to Mr. Hawker’s room to work, and students were also there practicing.” She remembers one especially endearing performance of ‘The Cat in the Hat’ and several instances of late-night giddiness. “Another time, it was about 3:30 a.m. and Marilyn and I were so tired that we became giggly, so much so that Mr. Hawker had to reign us in. He just wanted to get some sleep, too.” Marilyn adds, “We were so tired, you had to be close to get along. It was an unbelievably tedious task.” As always, Carol goes the extra mile to recognize the people she worked with on the task. “I have great respect for Mr. Hawker and I am glad I had the opportunity to work with him, as well as Ron Steinhorst, who I truly respect and with whom I’ve maintained a longtime friendship.” Despite the long hours and tediousness, Carol claims to miss the days of judge assignments, likely because of the bond it created with Marilyn, James, and Ron. Diane recalls the 2004 National Tournament in Salt Lake City when a co-worker talked the staff into driving to Park City for dinner. They took advantage of the opportunity to take a ski lift ride up a mountain. Just as they started out and were taking in the beautiful view, Diane commented to Carol, “I hope Jim Copeland doesn’t call for some reason right now.” Of course, the phone rang almost immediately, and it was Jim. Carol held the conversation on the ride. “When you are at Nationals, you feel like you are working 24/7,” Diane shares. “Even though our hearts were always toward the work, it doesn’t mean we didn’t have fun on the side.” Carol’s favorite thing about the tournament has less to do with laughs and more to do with helping people. Although it is long, she loves registration on Sunday. “We can help everyone resolve their problems, make them happy to be there, and have their students ready to compete.” During registration, Carol could be found at the “problem table,” a space
Carol received the Association’s Brother Gregory “Rene’” Sterner Lifetime Service Award in 2011. She was called to the stage and surprised by her two daughters, Andrea and Erika, both former NFL employees, as well.
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Volume 91 Issue 4