One Villager's Story
Pasadena Area Literary Arts Center
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CONVERSATIONS WITH ART
OLDER ADULTS RESOURCE FAIR
The Important, Influential Books in our Lives - Revisited
History, Resolution of the 710 Freeway
Eminent Domain, 710 Highway
Bernard Garrett, 710 Freeway
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Pasadena's Senior Commission
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GRATITUDE - IT'S GOOD FOR YOU!
JEFF GUTSTADT - FORENSIC PATHOLOGIST
Bernard Garrett, Incredible Black Entrepreneur
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Review of 2022, Consideration of 2023
BEYOND THE VILLAGE - PATTI LA MARR
FROM THE CHAIR
WALK WITH EASE
Sharon Jarrett - BEYOND THE VILLAGEBy Blog Master
BEYOND THE VILLAGE – Sharon Jarrett
Sharon learned the importance of helping others at a young age. Her mother, one of nine children, lost her mother at a young age. Without their mother, the siblings grew into adulthood by helping each other out, a quality that was passed down to Sharon from her own mother.
In 2015 Sharon retired after 37 years working for the Los Angeles Unified School District. When she retired she was the Director of Operations for Special Education but during her tenure she held many positions from school principal to head of staff development. During those years, working in a “helping” profession, Sharon always found something extra to do to help others, whether it was working on a book fair or helping a family in need.
Sharon joined Pasadena Village in 2014, while she was still working. “I knew that I had no real attachments to Pasadena. I have no children and most of my relationships were work related. I thought the Village was a good way to build relationships in the community.”
After she retired, Sharon, who is quite clearly a planner, took on a transitional project helping a friend who was principal of a school in a low-income neighborhood. With the help of a grant from Target, Sharon helped re-vamp the school library, adding resources to it and working to make it a part of the community.
Then Sharon turned her attention to the Villages. She volunteered to hand out brochures at the Conference on Aging. And she volunteered to help in the Village office, sorting through materials and organizing resource information. And then, in that magical Village way, she happened to sit next to Village member Sid Gally, at the Annual Meeting. Sid Gally, Pasadena’s unofficial historian, was a volunteer at the Pasadena Museum of History. Sid told her, “They really need volunteers.” Soon Sharon was helping them with their education program by training Junior Docents, seventh and eighth grade students who led tours of elementary school children through the exhibits.
Although Sharon had always paid attention to current events and voted in all elections, 2016 was a wake up call to her. She joined the League of Women Voters where she was on the Immigration committee. “I have worked with immigrants when I was in San Diego so I have a good understanding of border issues. There are so many myths about immigrants and borders. The League studies the realities of immigration to help inform the public.” Today Sharon is on the Board of the local League of Women Voters.
Sharon makes good use of her “free” time by closely following local and national politics. She regularly corresponds with her elected officials to share her point of view and emphasize her priority issues. One of those issues is the impact of incarceration on children. Through her church, Sharon supports a project called “Get on the Bus” which transports groups of children to visit their parents in prison. “Your parent is your parent, no matter the circumstances”, says Sharon, remembering again the lessons she learned from her mother.
In the Village Sharon is an active participant in the 1619 Discussion group and posts blogs of those meetings onto the Village website. She also participates in the Critical Issues discussion group and, building her community relationships – attends the 91101 neighborhood group.
It’s clear that, for Sharon, the heart leads, but common sense, organizational skills, and a willingness to do the work contribute to her volunteer efforts Beyond The Village.