03.13.10

Volunteer Spotlight: Carmen Rader-Bowles

Posted in 2010 Games, Volunteer Spotlight, World Equestrian Games at 4:15 pm by Thomas

For Carmen Rader-Bowles, volunteering to serve others is a common philosophy. And, the retired school teacher with a love for horses has become a familiar face at the World Games 2010 Foundation office.

“Service is something I have always done,” Rader-Bowles said. “I don’t take, I give back.”

Rader-Bowles has lived by this philosophy her whole life. She started giving back as a teacher. After graduating from Transylvania University in 1973, she spent 35 years in education, teaching at Fayette County Schools for the majority of her career.

“After I retired I needed something to fill the time,” Rader-Bowles said. “I combined my two passions; teaching and horses.”

Rader-Bowles has had a horse since she was eight years old and said she even rode her grandfather’s dairy cattle until he gave in and bought her a horse. She has experience with driving, Saddlebreds, Western and jumping, and currently owns a retired racehorse and half-leases a Warmblood.

Her experience with horses made her a perfect volunteer at the Kentucky Horse Park where she has worked with the Rolex Kentucky 3-Day Event, as well as Central Kentucky Riding for Hope, a therapeutic riding program for disabled children.

Stretching out her services even farther, Rader-Bowles began volunteering at WEG in January of 2009 and began to organize the awards for the 2010 Games. Comprised of more than 20 ceremonies complete with dozens of ribbons and trophies to be ordered, Rader-Bowles calls the awards planning a massive endeavor.

Thinking ahead to when the Games arrive, Bowles said she anticipates a week similar to finals week in college, with lots of coffee and little sleep.

“I have not been able to clone myself in the last 35 years,” Rader-Bowles said. “It will be interesting to see if I can this time around.”

But despite the hard work, Rader-Bowles is looking forward to the arrival of the Games and encourages others to volunteer, regardless of their experience with horses.

“For every minute you spend helping someone you get so much more back,” Rader-Bowles said. “You’ll never get the chance to be involved in something this big again, this is the Olympics baby!”

Although a volunteer is giving service without pay, to those who have tried it, like Rader-Bowles, it is something more; the opportunity to help others, meet new people and be a part of a special experience. Click here for more information about how to become a volunteer for the 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games.