Carolyn Keefe (1943-2013) was a paid member of our club in 2010 when we had a membership of only 32 folks! Today our club’s paid membership exceeds 150. Although she retired to Asheville, Carolyn moved back to Kentucky near the end of her life, to be close to her family and friends at Lindsey Wilson College, a small United Methodist College in Columbia, Kentucky.
In 2012 Carolyn telephoned to find out if the astronomy club was a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization. She wanted to leave a contribution in her will for our club. She emphasized that we should not be expecting a significant gift! Her kindness and generosity live on through our club. The Astronomy Club donates a sum each year in Carolyn Keefe’s name to UNC-Asheville to be used as a scholarship, for a student who is a STEM major and who is selected by the Physics Department staff. The scholarship is currently funded at $3,000 per year. The scholarship recipient also receives a one year membership to the club.
Carolyn Keefe was very well thought of by her fellow educators at Lindsey Wilson College. She was also very generous to the college. This YouTube video (linked through the image below) of the dedication of Keefe Hall at the college in October, 2014 gives us some insight into her life there.
Meet our Carolyn Keefe Scholarship Award recipients:
Click on the links for more information about these extraordinary young astronomers.
2023-2024: Phoebe Gittis and Aaron Speyer
2022-2023: Alex Parker and Ava Tomkins
2021-2022: Zach Savery
2020-2021: Jacob Crawford, Anna Josey and Simren Patel
2019-2020: Samantha Creech
2018-2019: Corey McAllister
2017-2018: Aisling Power and Makennah Bristow
2016-2017: Nathan Kirse
2015-2016: Natalie Kamitsuka