Tim Kilcoyne, a California chef and restaurateur who is currently on the East Coast with World Central Kitchen helping to provide hot meals for recovery crews and victims of Hurricanes Florence and Michael. After the Thomas Wildfire threatened his business and home last winter, Tim decided to get involved and help others in need.
Shirille Lee is a woman who has dedicated her life to making a difference in the lives of children. A Chatham County native, Shirille has fostered over 40 children herself and heads up the mentoring program for her county's Communities in Schools organization.
Joe Justice is a man whose humble beginnings were transformed by his exposure to the North Carolina Symphony as a school boy, and his life has been shaped by a love and appreciation for music. After a 33-year career with Bridgestone-Firestone, Joe turned to furniture restoration and woodworking. That led him to a position at the Whirligig Park in Wilson, restoring the Whirligigs of Vollis Simpson, the official folk art of North Carolina.
Brenda Whaley is a devoted mother of two who - along with three others - recently founded a non-profit organization with the goal of inclusion for special needs children, as well as their siblings and parents. Caring for her own son - who suffered a stroke in-utero - has inspired Brenda to help all family members to fell included and loved.
Helen Harwood is a cancer survivor whose advocacy on behalf of other cancer patients has brightened the lives of many for decades. With her husband of 58 years, she founded and directs a nonprofit called "Pennies from Angels," an organization that receives donations and distributes funds to people in crisis.
Ron and Lucie Saylor are a couple whose volunteer work on their later years has brightened the lives of many. Their story about Emmanuel Thrift Shop confirms the three-fold potential in the repurposing of merchandise - for donors, shoppers, and charities.
Covey Denton, an award-winning science teacher and single mom who with her three kids has acted in concrete ways to make life better for others less fortunate, near and far. They are quite a team! Covey's balance in the face of her own life's challenges is inspiring, and her passion is contagious.
Crissy Oravits, a native North Carolinian whose love for music has informed all aspects of her life - and especially her relationships with others. By the age of 3, she was touring the East Coast in ministry with her grandmother and other family members in their Gospel singing group, and after high school she became a nurse to support her music habit. Now, years later, she's teaching music to special needs children, including her own, and running a business that has made her a fixture in her community.
Crystal McIver, a woman whose journey has a difficult start, but whose redirection and optimism are inspiring. Born to parents unable to care for her, she was adopted in fifth grade but later found herself homeless before finishing high school. Crystal has every excuse for failing, but she turned herself around and vigorously pursued her education. She is now an active member of the community, a former teacher, a mother and grandmother, an author, and a business owner.
Jan and Darlene Van Ee, a couple whose paths first crossed in Mexico. They've now been married for 46 years, living and teaching for most of that time in Mexico and together raising 6 children. Darlene is an American of Dutch decent, and Jan is an immigrant from the Netherlands whose family crossed the Atlantic after World War II and settled in western Canada. Seven of their 19 grandchildren now live here in NC. Jan's and Darlene's perspective on things international and the human condition is both spiritual and practical... and refreshing.
Ken Wasley, founder and executive director of a nonprofit called Children of Fallen Heroes. Ken's lifelong connection with the military includes his father's history with the 82nd Airborne and the army's elite parachute team, the Golden Knights, and a very personal father-son connection with North Carolina. Ken's priority for supporting the spouses and children left behind - and what he's doing to make that real - is heartwarming and inspiring.
Mike Rowland, retired surgeon and now active grass-fed beef farmer and nutrition lecturer. As an eight-year-old, Mike tended his own vegetable garden and later in college studied agricultural economics, intending to be a farmer. He quickly learned something about the financial realities of buying a farm, however, and decided a career in medicine might help - but with the Vietnam War at its peak, he was then drafted. Mike's perspective on service to others and life's twists and turns, and his love for his wife, make for a story worth hearing.
Jean Kitchin, public, servant extraordinaire, has served in a wide range of advisory roles, formal and informal, and her wisdom in counseling others is grounded in years of life experience in business, education, and the media... and in family as a wife, mother, and grandmother. Her faith and perspective on people and social issues, as evidenced in the way she lives, is heartwarming, and her vigor and enthusiasm are inspiring.
A special Good Friday-Easter edition. A little music history, a couple of our regular songs, and a few different pieces from well-known artists, including some timeless Grammy award-winning music. Ghetto violence, 9/11, and the personal stories of everyday life - set to music - form the backdrop for this special edition of the "reason for this season."
Martha Butler, successful business woman, wife, mother, grandmother - and longtime board member of a youth mentoring program. Her humble beginnings as a black girl growing up in the segregated South served to ground her in her lifelong passion for encouraging young people to dream and to believe in themselves. Her perspective on racial issues, as evidenced by her own relationships, is heartwarming, and her hopeful attitude is contagious.
Susan Henson, Founder and President of Pharaoh's Daughter - a non-profit ministry that cares for babies born to women in prison. Susan believes in listening to the stories of others, and as a mother of four herself, she understands the importance of the mother-baby relationship and a stable family unit. Helping these mother's get back on their feet after their time in prison is her calling, and her conviction that broken roads can lead to good places is inspiring.