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July 2019 - Barbara Carroll
Congratulations to our Jully Volunteer of the Month, Barbara Carroll. Each July 4, 60,000 participants are welcomed to Piedmont Park by Barbara on the microphone. Having volunteered with the AJC Peachtree Road Race for 34 years, she has seen all aspects of what it take to keep runners hydrated that day.
Do you remember your first time volunteering with Atlanta Track Club? What brings you back?
I've been a volunteer with Atlanta Track Club for about 34 years. When I started, my husband and my son were running the race and my daughter and I volunteered. I started out by giving out cups of water at the water stations in the Park at the finish. Those were the days when we were on Oak Hill and the water pipes were coming from tankers on the Hill. The pipes ran underground to spigots in the middle of each station. We had so much fun that we returned each year to work with many of the same volunteers year after year. Everyone loved it. The Peachtree will always be the very best event that I've worked with, although I used to do water stations along Peachtree Road during the Thanksgiving Day Marathon. The thing that brought me back each year was the people with whom I worked. Jack Grosko was in charge of the Finish Line then and he was very organized. He worked at keeping us organized as well while making us feel so very important to the event.
Do you have a favorite volunteer assignment? Can you reflect on some of your past assignments?
Over the years, I was in charge of all the fluids in the Park. I used to fill up a pick up truck and deliver "ancillary" fluids to the medical tents, the stage, elite runners, VIP, etc., so they had cold drinks during the race. I worked with the people from Coke/Powerade, Gatorade (when we had that) and the Crystal Springs water people to put together the schedule for the arrival and set up of their various products.
Then I was asked to use a bullhorn and work with the runners arriving into the Park from 10th Street. Soon after, they provided me with a scaffolding setup and a microphone where I would be the lead cheerleader as people arrived in the Park to welcome them and explain where everything was.
That's my biggest responsibility now and I just love it! The runners are all wonderful in that they are always thanking the volunteers for being there. I'm generally in awe of how so many people get up early to run the race in the blistering heat just to be a part of it all.
What organizations do you volunteer with beyond Atlanta Track Club?
In addition to the Peachtree, I volunteer outside of Atlanta Track Club at various church functions at Mary Our Queen Catholic Church in Peachtree Corners and I've served in many capacities on the Board of my homeowners association. Additionally, I volunteered for many years with Mended Hearts, a group of people who've had heart surgery and visit with patients in hospitals who are about to undergo their own cardiac surgical procedure.
What do you do for a living?
I love people, which is why I love what I do at Peachtree each year. It's the people at the Track Club, the runners and other volunteers that bring me back year after year.. While the Peachtree has made many changes as the years have passed, there are still a few of us left who've been there consistently. Seeing them each year makes it all worthwhile. Peachtree has always been an important and integral part of my volunteer life.
Volunteer of the Month Update
Mizuno strives to be Atlanta's essential and reliable running brand. Since 2018 they have been committed to YOU, the essential and reliable volunteers who make our 30+ events and programs possible. They provide the Volunteer of the Month with seasonal apparel and discounted footwear to make all those hours spent on your feet more comfortable.
Previous Volunteers of the Month
"Volunteer of the Month" began in March of 2015 with the launch of our new website as a way to honor and recognize our amazing Atlanta Track Club volunteers who go above and beyond the call of duty. Congratulations to our Volunteers of the Month and thank you for all that you do!
June 2019 - Larry McDaniel