by MICHELLE TREMBLAY | photos by Samantha Gleaton Photography

Caring for Carlsbad

volunteer_simons2Maureen Simons has lived in Carlsbad for over 16 years. “My husband and I moved to Carlsbad for his work and he became very involved in the community,” recalled Maureen. “When he passed away five years ago, I wanted to keep his legacy alive and I immersed myself in many of the organizations he was involved with.” Today, Maureen – the proud mother to seven children and grandmother to 15 grandchildren – is doing more than simply keeping her husband’s legacy alive; she is also doing her part to keep Carlsbad thriving.

Some of the programs she is involved with include: the Funeral Ministry at St. Patrick’s Catholic Church, the Carlsbad Hi-Noon Rotary Club, and the Mitchell Thorp Foundation, which helps serve families with children battling life-threatening illnesses. “I have also been a member of the Assistance League of North Coast for the past 15 years,” added Maureen. “One of my passions is working on the Chapters for Children, where seven chapters of the Assistance League come together for a weekend to help clothe the children of enlisted servicemen and women of Camp Pendleton.”

Name: Maureen Simons
Community: Carlsbad
Volunteer Affiliation: AHLF, ALNC, Hi-Noon Rotary, St. Patrick Church, Carlsbad Chamber of Commerce, and Mitchell Thorp Foundation
Family: Seven children, 15 grandchildren
Hobbies: Socializing
Favorite Local Spots: Tip Top Meats, Village Kitchen and Pie Shoppe, Garcia’s Mexican Restaurant

volunteer_simons3Most recently, Maureen has been busy in her role as board president for the Agua Hedionda Lagoon Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to inspiring the public through education and outreach and to preserve the Agua Hedionda Lagoon in Carlsbad. “I was introduced to the Lagoon Foundation by Lisa Rodman,” remembered Maureen. “I was so impressed by the work they do for the community, specifically with the schools educating them on the environment and history of the lagoon, that I wanted to help.” In her position as board president, Maureen conducts monthly meetings, works on fundraising efforts, and helps with community outreach. “If I could grant the Foundation one wish, it would be a grant to build education nodes in the parking area to protect the students while they are attending our educational programs,” shared Maureen, who added that the Foundation is always looking for volunteers. “The only skill necessary (for volunteering) is the willingness to help!” she exclaimed.

In her downtime, Maureen enjoys playing card games and socializing with friends. But her passion truly lies in giving back to her community. “One thing I hold very near and dear to my heart is the L. John Simons Twin Inn Gazebo located in Magee Park, which was named after my husband shortly after his passing,” shared Maureen. “He and the Hi-Noon Rotary worked very hard to restore this Carlsbad Landmark, which now bears his name. It’s a constant reminder for me of his efforts to make Carlsbad the great city that it is!”