Meet your 2022 Branch Officers
Secretary – Sharon Powers
Treasurer – Nadine Ancel
Membership – Jean Olsen
Scholarships – Kathleen Adams
Public Policy – Faye Schrater
Diversity Officer- Peg Kimple
Program Co-Chair – Kathy Fine-Dare
C/U Representative – Dr. Marnie Thomson
BIOGRAPHIC INFORMATION ON BRANCH OFFICERS
Sharon Powers – Secretary
I was born and raised in Northern California. I earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting from California State University, Chico and then a Masters in International Business Studies from the University of South Carolina. I joined Price Waterhouse (now PricewaterhouseCoopers or PwC) in 1988, working and living in many locations including Houston, Kazakhstan and Russia before landing back in San Francisco. While in San Francisco with PwC I served for 10 years on the board of Professional Business Women of California (PBWC), a non-profit founded in 1989 by Congresswoman Jackie Speier to advance the role of women in the workplace. I retired from PwC in 2015 and settled in Durango in 2019.
I was born and raised in Joliet, IL, the third of six children. I received my BSN from Loyola University in Chicago in 1973. I held various nursing positions in IL, LA, NJ, and VA. After working for 28 years as a public health nurse for Fairfax County Health Department in Fairfax, VA, I retired in 2005 and moved with my significant other to Durango, CO. I have volunteered with the Red Cross and the Habitat for Humanity ReStore and was treasurer of the League of Women Voters of La Plata County for approximately 10 years. I joined AAUW Durango in the spring of 2020.
Jean Olsen – Membership
I grew up near Pojoaque, New Mexico, and attended The New Mexico School of Mines, majoring in mathematics and meeting my husband there. I also received a Master’s Degree in Math Education from Western New Mexico University. With my husband being a mining/metallurgical engineer, we have lived in five western states. In each state I found a teaching job, whether it be teaching reading to middle schoolers or math to high schoolers or developmental math to college students. In all I taught 34 years before I retired in 2014 from Pikes Peak Community College. I belonged to AAUW in Colorado Springs for several years before we moved to Durango in 2018 and was a ‘Names Honored Recipient.’
Kathleen Adams – Scholarship Chair
Kathleen has a BS in Nursing and has worked and volunteered in the medical field for years. She founded a non-profit disease association in 1993, now international, based on the undiagnosed chronic illness of one of her children, Cyclic Vomiting Syndrome – a migraine variant. She continues to administer the association and function as the research liaison to the medical team. Her community involvement is broad based and lends itself to her inherent drive to network. She is a board member of the Community Foundation Serving SW Colorado, on the leadership core of the League of Women Voters – La Plata and actively involved in the work of the La Plata County Democrats. She is an active member of the Unitarian Universalist Association from the national to the local level. Kathleen is widowed but surrounded by the six children and grandchildren who have grown up in her blended family. The family thrives on pushing boundaries and living out their values.
Faye Schrater – Public Policy Liaison
Faye was born and raised in rural Wyoming. She earned a B.S. and M.S. in Microbiology from the University of Wyoming, then spent two years in the Peace Corps in Guatemala. After the Peace Corps she worked as a research technician, then went back to school and earned a Ph.D. in Immunology and Infectious Disease from the University of Pennsylvania. Her research and academic career included positions at New York University Medical School, Harvard School of Public Health, and Smith College. At Smith, in addition to teaching, she worked with the Project on Women and Social Change to study gender issues in science. She served as a consultant on the development of new contraceptive methods for women for the World Health Organization, and was the U.S. liaison to WHO’s Gender Advisory Panel. Throughout her professional career she advised, consulted, worked on, and advocated for gender equality and reproductive rights.
Faye moved to Durango in 2003. She supports the Women’s Resource Center where she sits on WRC’s scholarship committee. She also is a member of the Board of Ethics for Mercy Regional Medical Center. She is proud to be a member of AAUW, whose mission to support women in achieving their goals aligns with hers. As Public Policy Liaison, she will bring to the membership information on issues of today that affect women, and provide means of advocacy.
Peg Kimple – Diversity Officer
I grew up in southern New Jersey, across the Delaware River from Philadelphia. I attended Earlham College, earning a degree in Far Eastern History. A foreign study experience took me to Japan, where I stayed with the family of a girl who had lived as an exchange student with my family for a year. I have returned to Japan twice since, once on a national fellowship to work with Japanese not-for-profits. Later I earned a Master’s Degree from the State University of New York.
My first work experience was interviewing teen mothers about their substance use during pregnancy. I developed a deep respect for their resilience and sense of responsibility during their pregnancies. I continued to work with women’s issues: reproductive health, domestic violence, and teen motherhood. And finally, I was able to make clear the relationship between women’s issues and substance abuse; I became the coordinator of a coalition that brought a diverse urban community to understand how substance abuse affects everyone. For this work, the local NAACP awarded me the honor of “Woman of the Year”.
Kathy Fine-Dare – Program Co-Chair
Kathy was born in Indianapolis, Indiana. She earned a Ph.D. from University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign; and a BA, from DePauw University. Kathy assumed the rank of Professor Emeritus of Anthropology and Gender & Women’s Studies after teaching for 34 years at Fort Lewis College and serving twice as Chair of the Department of Anthropology and three times as Coordinator of the Gender & Women’s Studies (now Gender & Sexuality Studies) program. She also served as faculty affiliate for the FLC Native American & Indigenous Studies program, and in 2005 received a second Fulbright grant to teach in the Anthropology & Culture MA program at the Salesian Polytechnic University in Quito, Ecuador. She has published several book reviews, book chapters, and journal articles.
Marnie Thomson was born and raised in eastern Iowa. She attended Washington University in St. Louis for college, where she fell in love with anthropology. During her junior year, she studied abroad in Kenya and Tanzania. After college, she moved to New Zealand, and then came back to the US to obtain her MA in Social Sciences at the University of Chicago. Marnie earned her PhD in Anthropology from the University of Colorado at Boulder, and her dissertation research on humanitarian intervention and retreat took her to Tanzania, Congo, Kenya, and Switzerland. Her new research project examines campaigns against sexual and gender-based violence in Congo and in the United States. She is thrilled to be at Fort Lewis College, where she loves teaching courses such as Anthropology of Gender and Global Humanitarianism. She also has begun directing a field school in Tanzania, where student participants design and conduct their own anthropological research on topics such as global health, gender, and international aid.