Welcome to our new Board Chair, Jenny Carlson-Pietraszek
Our new board chairperson, Jenny Carlson-Pietraszek, still uses her GPS when she drives to The Children’s Room in Arlington. The first trip, a sad, quiet ride with two young daughters, Zoe and Lucy, was to join a peer support group after the death of her wife, Jean in 2009. Today, the trip often serves as “carved out time” to remember Jean and the GPS helps keep Jenny on track.
Four years after Jenny and her girls stopped coming to peer support groups, she was ready to give back and agreed to share her story for the annual Circle of Hope breakfast. A position on the board of directors followed soon after and her contribution to this life-altering place of hope expanded.
As a board member, Jenny was excited to support The Children’s Room and when there was talk about the future board presidency, she was ready to do more. With onboarding support of great mentors, Michael Nagle and Liz Cohen, Jenny is eager to lead the board as the organization explores growth opportunities. The possibility of expanding the impact of The Children’s Room while continuing its “no fee, no hassle of insurance calls” commitment, motivates her as she juggles a career and two teenage girls getting ready for college.
“The Children’s Room attracts smart, grounded, passionate people to both its staff and its board. We are engaged in this loving, intentional work and it is energizing to commit to the effort with this team,” says Jenny. “We want to contribute to the cultural dialogue about grief and death.”
In closing, Jenny shared something her daughter expressed recently as a 16-year-old. “When we were going to The Children’s Room after Mommy died, I was really unaware of what was going on. I realize now how much it helped us to talk about her and to keep my memories of Mommy vivid and a source of comfort.”
Welcome, Jenny. We are thrilled to have your insights and passion for our work.