Board of Directors

Board Members

Carole LeClair,  President

Carole LeClair

Carole LeClair

Carole grew up in Houston, daughter of an Engineer and Homemaker. Her dad was the type to fix something rather than buy new. All his hobbies revolved around making stuff. She followed suit, learning to quilt, sew, and wield a mean glue gun.

After graduating from UT in Electrical Engineering, Carole hired on at Motorola, Inc and worked there for over 17 years. Eventually she moved to the next phase of her life, that of being a stay at home mom. As a mom with small kids, their crafts involved using bubble wrap, egg cartons, blister packaging, along with crayons, glue and paint.

When her daughter hit 2nd grade, she took over leadership of her Girl Scout troop and she’s been active in Scouting ever since. They’ve tried to keep a light foot print in the troop, using durable cups, bowls and utensils during meetings as well as recyclable and reuse items for projects and crafts. She also started and “Go Green Team” at Lee Elementary.

Lindsay Cruthers, Board Treasurer

Lindsay was born in Flint, Michigan and migrated south to Austin, Texas nearly a decade ago.  Attracted to the booming economy and sunshine, she put her Bachelor of Lindsay CruthersScience degree in Molecular Biology to use in Texas.  

After a few years she determined that she was better suited to work as an accounting professional.  Lindsay is employed at Atchley & Associates, LLP in the tax department on the accounting services team.  Her focus includes helping business owners with their accounting processes and business practices.

She will soon complete her Master of Science in Accounting degree (Texas A&M at Commerce) and is a member of the Austin Young Chamber of Commerce and the Austin Chapter of the Texas Society of Certified Public Accountants.

Lindsay is thrilled to get the opportunity to be a part of Austin Creative Reuse (ACR) and contribute to conservation and reuse in the community. Although not creative herself, she very much enjoys seeing what others are able to do with their ACR finds.

Leslie Hall, Board Member

Leslie Hall

Leslie Hall

Leslie has worked in the education field for a decade and believes the power of creativity and hands-on experience transforms both teaching and learning. A Texas native, she spent several years in the California Bay Area as an educator, advocate, and researcher. There, she relished the resources and inspiration offered by a varieof creative reuse organizations and left determined to help build such a resource within the Austin community.

She earned a Master of Public Policy degree from the University of California at Berkeley and is a proud UT Austin alumna. She currently works as a project manager at UT’s Center for Teaching and Learning. Leslie comes from a long line of creative reusers and carries on the tradition by accumulating sacks of bottle caps and piles of fabric scraps that will one day become something lovely.

Cindy Lawrence, Board Member

Cindy Lawrence

Cindy Lawrence

As an elementary educator of 19 years, Cindy frequently used recycled materials to supply class activities and dreamed of having an educator’s material exchange. After a visit to Scrap Exchange in Durham, N.C., Cindy came home to Austin excited at the reuse center possibilities, researched and found like minds at Austin Creative Reuse.
As a member of the board, she is incredibly excited at the unlimited possibilities for educational and community programming that Austin Creative Reuse will be able to offer with their soon-to-open center.  “I would always sell my environmental message by telling my students they were the ‘Keepers of the Earth’. Children are innate stewards who love feeling empowered by knowing they can take sustainable actions. Austin Creative Reuse will not only have numerous opportunities to teach creative sustainability but to also live that message.”

Karen Miller, Board Secretary

Kare Miller

Karen Miller

Inspired by Gertrude Chandler Warner’s The Boxcar Children at an early age, Karen began diverting interesting and useful items from the landfill, thrifting, gardening, and refashioning at an early age. She has translated that interest into a career as a professional engineer with a focus on waste management, spill prevention, risk assessment, and reduction of stormwater pollutant discharges from industrial facilities.

Karen began creative pursuits through scrapbooking her two children’s exploits. Through scrapbooking, she learned different techniques related to color theory, the use of different media, photography, and layout. Since then, she has truly enjoyed creatively repurposing items into art pieces, yard art, and a funky henhouse. She continues repurposing by developing creative Girl Scout projects for her troops and SWAPs kits for other troop leaders. Karen views her regular stints sorting materials in the Center’s by-the-bucket section as her weekly The Artist’s Way artist’s date field trip as a means to further engender creativity.

Amelia Despre, Board Member

Amelia Despre

Amelia grew up in France and moved to Palo Alto, California in 2002, as she was working as an IT project manager for Hewlett Packard. Work then took her to Austin in 2009.

Since she’s been in the United States, Amelia has been volunteering regularly for various nonprofits, with responsibilities ranging from volunteer lead to serving as the treasurer on two Board of Directors. She has always tried to reduce her carbon footprint by taking small steps like composting, growing her own food and upcycling materials, which is what drew her to the mission of Austin Creative Reuse.  She started volunteering for ACR in the summer 2015, as they were about to open Austin’s first reuse center and needed help sorting thru donations and organizing the store. Amelia joined the ACR Board of Directors as the chair for the Systems and Procedures committee.

Amelia graduated from the nonprofit leadership and management program at the Center for Nonprofit Studies at Austin Community College in 2016.

Nancy Lyon, Board Member

Nancy Lyon

Nancy spent the first part of her life in the DC area, but had finally had enough of the politics, cold, and traffic, so she moved to Austin. For most of the 20 years or so that she has lived here, she has been doing molecular biology research at UT Austin. She recently started working at Austin Community College’s new campus in the old abandoned Highland Mall (her office is in the old shoe dept of JC Penney’s) and is helping to build Austin’s first leaseable wet lab space.

Nancy comes from a family of creatives. All professional scientists, but with hobbies such as cooking, glass fusing and lampwork, costume design, and jewelry making. As an underpaid scientist, she took naturally to finding ways of keeping busy and to making things, without spending money. Once you have that mindset and that skill set, it’s hard to do things any other way. The fact that re-using materials is also good practice for the planet makes her heart kind of soar. On any given day, you could find her amongst the makings of puppets, jewelry, a metalsmithing project or even a delicious dinner. In addition to spending her days buying $50K laboratory instruments to outfit the space, she scours freecycle and craigslist for valuable opportunistic treasures for the lab. Maybe, someday, there will be a bio-hacker space carved out at Highland.

Sharon Yarbrough, Board Member

Sharon Yarbrough

Sharon has over 20 years experience working in Austin education and conservation nonprofits and is a proud AmeriCorps alum. Her greatest motivation for living sustainably is wanting to instill environmental stewardship in her daughter and our next generations.

“I wanted to become part of Austin Creative Reuse because it is the perfect blending of my passions: art, education and conservation. I knew it was the right place for me the minute I walked in the door.”

Sharon earned a degree in technical writing from Illinois State University and was a high school English teacher before translating her skills into grant writing. Grant writing led to fundraising; including events and donor engagement. Sharon is the Development Coordinator for Southwest Key Programs, the 2nd largest nonprofit in Austin.
While her favorite activity is crafting or hiking with her daughter, Sharon volunteers as the Kiddie Crew Leader for the Austin Parks Foundation, a delivery driver for Meals on Wheels and reading mentor with East Austin College Prep.

 


Founders

  • Rebecca Stuch (Board President 2009 – 2017)
  • Harley Gambill
  • Kami Wilt
  • Isadora McKeon
  • Lisa Stevens
  • Ellen Scatton
  • Molly Whitten

Interns

  • Pooja Panda (Fall 2016)
  • Toni Red:  As a self proclaimed environmental activist, Toni loves to encourage others think green. She gets to do just that as an intern for Austin Creative Reuse. Since 2013, Toni has been spreading the word about ACR and reuse by writing blog posts about reducing waste and reuse projects. She is currently in her final year at UT and will graduate with a degree in Environmental Science with a focus in Biology. She wants to continue working for the environment by protecting wildlife and wildlife habitat.  (Spring 2014- Spring 2016)
  • Kaci Lambeth (Spring 2016)
  • Scott McCarty (Fall 2015)
  • Alice Armstrong (Fall 2013)
  • Rachel Miller (Fall 2013)
  • Jonathan Davis (Fall 2013)