Audrey Bolton and Rebekah Pipkin are lifelong friends who since their youth have had a heart for kids in need. As foster and adoptive parents, they recently started a backpack fundraising program – almost by happenstance. In a matter of days, they raised over $1200 – and they’ve used those funds and more to buy backpacks and fill them with essentials for children just entering the foster care system – many of whom may otherwise not have any belongings of their own. Audrey and Rebekah say they’re motivated in part by a bible verse, James 1:27 – a call to care for orphans and widows.
The education of the next generation is a huge part of who Pam Kerley is. Having homeschooled her own three children for most of their lives, Pam now also serves as the Cooperative Extension’s 4-H program assistant in Lee County. She works with and on behalf of kids all day and knows a thing or two about how they learn and what motivates them. She has also recently found herself in a position to help other parents with unexpected homeschooling responsibilities of their own. Her commitment is inspiring, and her enthusiasm is contagious.
Charles McKnight’s humble beginnings did not hold him back. Grounded early on the encouragement of his parents, he has excelled in a number of arenas. And building on his academic and business success, he now serves as pastor at New Zion A.M.E. Zion Church in Moore County. His spiritual perspective, his passion for making a difference in the lives of others, and his hope for the future are an inspiration.
A special Labor Day episode featuring Cummins Rocky Mount Engine Plant employee, Steven Dickens. Steven is not only a hard worker, but a lover of life and a passionate gospel singer and we're thrilled to be able to share his story with you!
Ron Green - CEO of the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Tar River Region – grew up in some rough neighborhoods, but was able to overcome the violent environments of his childhood through his pursuit of athletic excellence. He was eventually drafted by the Chicago Cubs organization and played in the minor leagues for several years before finding his true calling helping disadvantaged youth. He's now been working with the Boys and Girls Club in various cities for over twenty years. Ron is joined by Elijah Sellers, who was recently named the Boys and Girls Clubs' Youth of the Year in North Carolina. Like Ron, Elijah is an overcomer - and he's going places!
Meet John Luckett, President and CEO of the Raleigh Rescue Mission. John grew up on a small farm in rural Mississippi and has a front row seat on the civil rights fear and tensions of the 1960s in the deep South. He was one of the few in his high school class to go to college, and after a successful career in banking and business he and his wife decided as a matter of faith and mercy to take an active hand in meeting the needs of those less advantaged. John has long recognized and appreciated the opportunities given to him by others, and refusing to let race, culture, or his roots define him or limit him, he has turned his personal experience into a life changing ministry to the homeless in our region.
William and Lynne McDuffie are both practicing veterinarians who have turned a great love of the outdoors into a vital non-profit organization - Foothills Outdoors - whose mission is "Giving Everyone a Place to Play." Over the past several years, Foothills Outdoors has established miles of hiking, biking, and paddling trails along Bear Creek in the Robbins area, and they've hosted fundraising events for a variety of organizations in their community.
A special Independence Day episode where we'll hear stories and 4th of July memories from some of the members of our Life 103.1 team and talk about freedom and the flag and what it means to them to be an American - along with some special music they've selected.
For this special edition of Grace Notes, we’ve decided to address the current national conversation on race and justice by featuring clips from a number of our past guests – guests whose passion is for their communities and who are committed to making a positive difference. Their lives are more than just talk – they’ve oriented their time, talent, and treasure to serve others. They look beyond skin color, but without ignoring the differences – racial, economic, social, historical – that present real challenges to many. And recognizing the power of music we’ve also selected songs that we think speak to the current issues in a compelling way, songs by Stevie Wonder and Paul McCartney, Bob Dylan, and Sam Cooke.
Meet WWII Veteran Jim Berardi. He'll share a little bit about his experience as a Marine on Iwo Jima, and also reflect on what Memorial Day means to him. We're honored to be able to share just a little glimpse into the life of this 94-year-old.
North Carolina Teacher of the Year, Mariah Morris. With National Teacher Appreciation Day coming up next Tuesday, we invited Mariah to share some of her story with us. She is a woman who is passionate about empowering children – and making a difference – through education. And she’s committed therefore to supporting teachers who love teaching. COVID-19 has required some adjustments, but her goals are unchanged.
Meet Ginny Mohrbutter, Executive Director of the United Way Tar River Region. The worldwide pandemic has affected everyone, but Ginny is undaunted in her commitment to serve our neighbors. Through her region's COVID-19 response fund, she is coordinating ongoing support of the unique needs of the many nonprofits on the front lines of her part of North Carolina. Ginny's optimism is paired with an energetic can-do approach to life that is just downright encouraging.
Upon Jane Tyson’s retirement from Abbott Labs after 28 years, volunteer work became her focus. Among other things, she started a 4H sewing club - and has not only taught girls of all ages to sew, but has instilled in them through their sewing projects a special spirit of giving to meet the needs of others in the community. And in response to the nationwide shortage resulting from the demands of the coronavirus pandemic, Jane and her team have recently taken it upon themselves to sew dozens of face masks to donate to hospitals and nursing homes.
After losing her son to a rare blood disease in 2009 at the age of (as he would say) 7 and 3/4 years old, Betsy Moore and her family with the help of dozens of volunteers decided to pay it forward. Each September in celebration of Dylan's birthday, with the town of Gaston, will host Dylan Moore Days and all proceeds are given to a family in medical crisis.
Anthony McCauley is the founder and CEO (Chief Encouraging Officer) of a non-profit organization called MALES of Distinction. Knowing for himself what it means in life to get off track, he serves now as a role model and mentor for boys in his community - many of whom are growing up in homes without a father figure. And his passion for his mission is inspiring.
We are proud to welcome back our very first Grace Notes guest - Mary Latham. Over three years ago, Mary set out on a mission to travel to every state in the country - in her late mother's blue Subaru - to collect stories of human kindness. We spoke to her in 2016 when she was in North Carolina, and since then she has been on quite the journey. The stories she's heard and the people she's met along the way have greatly impacted her life, and Mary plans to write a book to donate to hospital waiting rooms in the hopes that families going through loss and hard times will be encouraged and uplifted - something she so desperately yearned for during her mom's battle with cancer. When we originally heard Mary's story, Grace Notes was just an idea, but today we can say that she and the stories she's heard embody what Grace Notes is all about.
Ginger Minichiello lived most of her life in the Boston area and worked more than 50 years as a registered nurse. She and her husband moved to NC some 15 years ago and she has not slowed down, making an impact on her community in more ways than one - volunteering with a variety of organizations, ranging from her local master gardener program to her County's North Carolina Symphony Advisory Board. Her retirement lifestyle is an inspiration.