Room For All Friends:

It is with great joy that we share with you that Room for All has selected Marilyn Paarlberg to be the Executive Coordinator of Room For All. Marilyn brings a wealth of personal and professional attributes and skills to the position as well as a proven track-record in the work she has done with RfA in the Albany region. She has deep roots in the RCA, both in the Midwest and in the East. She is an excellent communicator, educator, and manager with strong gifts for engaging those to whom we are in mission. Marilyn has served as a Christian Education Director at two RCA congregations and as Office Manager at two ELCA congregations. She earned her B.A. degree in English from DePauw University in Indiana and has also taken classes at Western Theological Seminary.

In her own words she describes herself: By nature, I can point to three dominant traits:

• I am a writer. I cannot think of any activity that absorbs and satisfies me more. The process of choosing and arranging words on a page for any purpose is, for me, deeply elemental.

• I am outgoing; an extrovert in the classic definition of that term. These two traits sometimes clash because the first calls for solitude, the second, socializing, but going too long without one or the other leads to restlessness and unease.

• I have a deep empathetic nerve. I have been told that I “think with my heart.” I seem to have a sixth sense for perceiving the emotional layers in circumstances and relationships.

As I consider my personal and professional life over the years, I have begun to see that these core aspects – questioning Christian, writer and empathic extrovert – have blended and found voice in ways that were not always clear to me at the time. It is also clear that the most rewarding experiences and relationships have been those that evoked all three. I view serving as Room for All Coordinator to be such an opportunity.

Marilyn lives with her husband John outside of Albany, New York.