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Carol L. Anderson, 2017 Wisconsin Idea Alumni Award Winner

SoHE grad Carol Anderson (’65 BS, ’69 MS) is a Midwest leader with a lifetime of consumer science experience, from 4H and farming to educating and consulting. Her national and international activities reveal a deep dedication to the promotion of the human sciences while her civic involvement is devoted to helping the citizens of her rural community. This work, in addition to her wind energy advocacy, make Anderson the recipient of SoHE’s 2017 Wisconsin Idea Alumni Award.

Adapted from the nomination statement.

Carol Anderson is a prominent scholar, educator, and leader in the field of Family and Consumer Sciences. Currently the president of LORAC Consulting, her roots in home economics started in 4-H while growing up on a farm in southwest Wisconsin. Many years later, after completing her Master’s degree, she became a UW-Extension educator in Trempealeau County, Wisconsin. While working on her doctorate, she was appointed as an extension human development specialist and assistant professor in Child Development at Iowa State University, and would eventually assume a statewide leadership role in childcare programming and parent education.

After 10 years at Iowa State University, Carol joined the faculty at Cornell University where she served as assistant dean of the College of Human Ecology and was named associate director of Cornell’s Cooperative Extension in 1980. Carol has been active in many professional societies, including the American Association of Family & Consumer Sciences, where she served as President-Elect and then, from 1999-2000, as President of the Board of Directors. From 2001-2006 she was editor for the Journal of Family & Consumer Sciences. In 2005, she received a Distinguished Service Award from the American Association of Family & Consumer Sciences in recognition of her leadership roles at both the state and national level.

In 2008, Carol was elected to the Iowa County Board of Supervisors, a position she held for eight years. Prior to this, Carol worked to gain approval for Iowa County’s first and only wind power farm that features twenty wind turbines located on her family farm. As a representative of NextEra Energy, Carol frequently conducts tours of the wind farm, educating the public about the benefits of wind power. Carol continues to manage the day-to-day operations of her farm near Cobb, WI. She has remained active in state and national professional associations and is currently the president of the U.S. chapter of the International Federation for Home Economics. In this capacity, she has broadened her role in the global issues of the profession.

Supporting SoHE’s 100 Women

In addition to her professional and civic experiences, Carol has been a long-standing donor to the School of Human Ecology. She has attended alumni events on campus and in Iowa County. She was one of several donors to the collaborative campaign to honor Dean Emerita Robin Douthitt as a 100 Women honoree. In 2015, she participated in the collaborative Morgridge matching gift effort resulting in the School’s 100 Women Chair in Human Ecology. By virtue of her gift to this endowment, Carol joined the ranks of 100 Women honorees with their images permanently on display in Nancy Nicholas Hall.

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