High Country Character: Carrie Marsh | VailDaily.com

High Country Character: Carrie Marsh

NWS GTK Carrie Marsh KA 01-06-09

VAIL, Colorado ” The offices of the Vail Symposium certainly looked like an office in transition. Outgoing Executive Director Fraidy Aber sat on the floor, surrounded by paperwork, telling Carrie Marsh, her successor, all about the important people she needs to know. Taking the helm of the organization is a homecoming of sorts for Marsh, who grew up in Aspen and Denver. She went to college in Washington, D.C., spent a year in Paris as a teacher, has worked for the Aspen Institute, and most recently lived in New York City, where she was a fundraiser for Cooper Union, the prestigious college that provides full-tuition scholarships to its students. With that background in nonprofits and fundraising ” as well as her stints living in some of the most cultured cities in the world ” she hopes to bring the Vail Symposium to new heights. The nonprofit, which brings cultural events to the valley, kicks off its winter season Tuesday with a satellite broadcast at the Vail Interfaith Chapel of a talk by economist Paul Krugman. For more information, go to http://www.vailsymposium.org.

Vail Daily: Why did you want this job?

Carrie Marsh: I saw the job description, and I read about the organization, and I thought, “How fun would this be,” because it really brings together everything that I’m really interested in. Hot topics with politics, living in D.C., that part of me, and film and arts and culture with Cooper Union. It kind of brought everything together.

VD: Tell me about the Vail Symposium.

CM: The Vail Symposium is the second-oldest organization in the valley. So that’s pretty cool. It’s in its 38th year. Through Fraidy’s leadership, it’s had a coming-out party, if you will. We’re a lot more known than we were before. It’s a cultural organization. Most cities, and even Aspen, have, like, five organizations that do what the Vail Symposium does alone. Because we have a film series, we have arts and culture lectures as well as teaching people how to do bronze bowls, and then we have politics. It’s so much combined into one. It’s really bringing culture to the community.

VD: What are your interests?

CM: Politics I love. I’m big into photography. I love jazz. I ski. I’m actually a salsa dancer. Do you have salsa dancing around here? I’m a huge salsa dancer, actually. I love dogs. I’m a sucker for dogs.

VD: Why did you want to come back to Colorado?

CM: There’s nothing like Colorado. In New York City, for example, when I was looking for an apartment, I wanted separation of space and sunlight. Do you know how hard that is to find? It’s unbelievable. But I love the outdoors and I love the beauty. I love open spaces. Thank God for open spaces. …

I’m just really excited about being back in Colorado and really taking what Fraidy and (longtime director) Ebby (Pinson) have built in such a beautiful way and take it to the next level. Building upon what we have and also making it bigger with bigger speakers, bigger names and involving the community even more than we have before.

Staff Writer Edward Stoner can be reached at 970-748-2929 or estoner@vaildaily.com.

Want to see someone profiled in our High Country Character feature? E-mail cschnell@vaildaily.com or call 970-748-2984.

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