Rosie Turner is a believer that big changes come from education and empowerment. She works at Community Clubhouse, a local program started by Adventure Christian Church, that offers free tutoring and much more to underprivileged families. Rosie’s tireless work embraces the mantra of Community Clubhouse which is “Helping People Help Others.”
Tell us about Community Clubhouse, where you are the volunteer Director of Development (and much more).
We offer three free services. The first service is tutoring in reading and math from elementary school ages to adult. Second, the Hope for Homes program, which matches a team of volunteers who act as coaches and support to homeless families helping them secure permanent housing. Last is our Legacy Mentoring Program, which provides mentors for middle school boys who do not have an adult male in their home.
The Community Clubhouse has been my pastor Buddy Howard’s (from Adventure Christian Church) vision for a long time. He asked two wonderful women from the church, Sarah Gatewood and Melissa Lopez, to work with him to start this nonprofit. All three of them worked tirelessly for a year to put everything in place to open our doors. Many more volunteers came from our church, other churches, Goldsmith Elementary, and the community, which stepped up to help in every aspect of the organization from board members to volunteers.
How did you get involved with Community Clubhouse?
I got involved with the Community Clubhouse because my Buddy Howard asked me. How can you say no to your pastor? Many of the clubhouse volunteers have said, as have I, that they “feel truly blessed to be in involved with this organization.”
Tell us about your students’ success at Community Clubhouse in such a short period of time.
We intentionally do two things to give our students the best chance for success. First, we assign individual tutors who work one-on-one with the student each week. Second, we include the parent as an integral part of the process, training them to reinforce the tutoring techniques at home, as well as providing methods on how to be involved with the student’s school teachers. Third, our success is due to the motivation of the individuals who are involved. From the students wanting to improve in the classroom, to the volunteers wanting to make a difference in someone’s life, to the parents who faithfully bring their children each week and work with them at home, to those who support us financially, everyone is motivated to do their part and we are each rewarded, individually, for our involvement.
What do you find is at the heart of success for these children? Love? Attention? One-on-one time?
The gift of time is the most precious gift anyone can ever give or receive. It conveys interest, concern and respect. Children and adults thrive and strive to do their best when given the gift of time from those who care about them.
Being a single mom with two children and a busy job, what do you do for yourself?
I dance! I Contra Dance with the Louisville Country Dancers at the Church of the Advent. They have weekly Monday night dances, as well as every first Friday and Third Saturday of the month. We dance to a live band and it is a very safe, happy and fun place to be!
How do you balance your job and your personal life?
I stay very busy. As a single mom of two teenagers, I am always running. We have priorities that I do not negotiate on: working together as a team at home, attending church as a family and time off for both me and the kids. I have them every other weekend, so when it is my weekend off, I do things for me that I enjoy and recharge my batteries. I know am no good to my kids if I don’t take care of myself.
What is the biggest life lesson you have ever learned?
My God is a mighty God and there is nothing that life can throw you that he cannot handle. I have been in a situation that is completely and totally beyond my ability to control. Once I accepted, “I can’t, but God can,” he took over and has completely provided for me and my kids every step of the way.
Who is your mentor?
I don’t have just one, I have several! They are special women in my life who were each divinely appointed and have reached out to me, and me to them, so we can do life together. One has lost a child, one has recently adopted a child, another went through a painful divorce and the last one has five kids! We laugh, cry, encourage, forgive, counsel, study, worship, pray, rejoice and of course, one of our favorites, eat together! My dad, my former father-in-law and my pastor have all been invaluable rocks to me when I felt I was on sinking sand.
What is best advice you have received in business?
The most important person in your business is your customer. If you don’t provide what you promise, stand behind your product, mean what you say or take them for granted, you will no longer have a business.
If you were not in your current job, what would you secretly love to do?
I would be a tour guide to exotic and adventurous locales like Machu Pichuu in Peru, the Galapagos in Ecuador, Victoria Falls in Africa, New Zealand, and Alaska. Any day I get to get on an airplane to travel with others is a GREAT DAY!
What is something people would be surprised to know about you?
I love the stage! I travelled as a cast member and worked in the 80’s with the organization, UP WITH PEOPLE. My casts travelled internationally and performed for Pope John Paul in Rome as well as all over the US, Canada, Mexico, Europe and Japan. When I moved back to Louisville, I got into community theatre, which was great fun. Now, I am the storyteller once a month to the pre-schoolers at church.
What is your favorite place to go eat?
Atwatan Restaurant and Sweets, which is right across the street from the Community Clubhouse, my newest favorite. They serve Mediterranean food that is as good as any I have ever eaten. My favorite places to eat serve ethnic food, such as Havana Rumba (Cuban), Vietnam Kitchen (Vietnamese) and Chuy’s (Mexican).
Where do you like to shop?
OK, don’t laugh but this is the absolute truth: Kroger Stoneybrook! I feel so at home there! I love to create in the kitchen, and the grocery store gives me endless possibilities to consider. So many recipes, so little time! I also enjoy going to yard sales where the deals cannot compare to anything in a store. A year ago, I bought my beautiful lighted china cabinet for $100.00. It was a deal of the century.
What is a treat or a luxury that you do for yourself?
I don’t do this very often, but when I can, I get on a plane and go have an adventure. I visited one of my Up With People castmates last summer, with a friend, in Hawaii. It was a great adventure learning how to snorkle, taking hula lessons, eating from the road side shrimp trucks and exploring the beauty of the island. By the way, I bought all my souvenirs at the Swap Meet (Flea Market) or at yard sales!
What is your weakness?
This is an easy one! Homemade pumpkin pie with fresh whipped cream piled high. Absolute bliss!
What is your favorite thing to do in Louisville?
Hands down, it is going to the Kentucky State Fair every August. This has been a tradition in my family since I was a kid, and now all my siblings, as well as my mom and dad, and I all go with all our families, multiple times. Many of us enter the culinary competitions and are so excited when anyone wins a ribbon! My motto is, “Any color ribbon is a good ribbon!” I have over 30 ribbons from the fair.
Three things you cannot live without (besides God, family and friends):
Siri – I just got an iPhone and she is my new best friend.
My kitchen tools – good quality kitchen tools make all the difference! I sold Pampered Chef products for 14 years.
My Bible – Psalm “Thy word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path.”
What are you reading right now?
The Resolution for Women by Pricilla Shirer
What are three of your “favorite things” right now?
Cheering for my daughter at her middle school basketball games.
Cooking in the kitchen with my son. He loves to cook like me.
Dancing with the Louisville Country Dancers.
Thank you to Rosie Turner and the Community Clubhouse for doing such good work in our community. If you would like to volunteer at the Community Clubhouse or help financially, please contact Rosie Turner through email at [email protected] or (502) 410-1349.
And, thank you to Adele Reding Photography and the beautiful photographs. Adele is now working on Christmas cards and produces beautiful custom cards. To contact Adele or see her portfolio, visit her site at www.AdeleRedingPhotography.com.
Don’t miss a thing at StyleBlueprint Louisville! Here’s how:
Sign up for e-mails here at
Like us on Facebook here: www.facebook.com/StyleBlueprintLouisville
Follow us on Pinterest here: http://pinterest.com/styleblueprint/styleblueprint-louisville/
Follow us on Twitter here: https://twitter.com/SBLouisville