Karen Rawlings has been an active volunteer with the Columbia Public Schools since 1975. She has volunteered in the library, health room, at field days, book fairs, science fairs, and as PTA president, as well as PTSA president at Hickman High School. She chaired the Hickman Music Boosters organization, which raised more than $40,000 to send the school chamber choir to Vienna, Austria. She was the first non-student to receive the Super Kewp Award.
When the Volunteers in Columbia Schools and the Partners in Education program were being established, Karen worked closely with Jolene Schulz at CPS to bring these two opportunities in volunteerism to fruition. Karen remembers spending time in nearly every school in the district, training teachers, parents and community volunteers in the merits of these programs. She was recognized by the National Association of Volunteers in 1991 for these contributions.
In addition to her numerous community involvement with other organizations, Karen volunteers at the Early Childhood Learning Center through the Partners in Education program. Karen and her husband, Dave, are founding members of the Columbia Public Schools Foundation, and Karen is also a past CPSF board member.