Board Member Profile: Ashelynn Falkenburg

Ashelyn-resized-for-webAshelynn Falkenburg, current Chair of the Junior Board of Visitors (JBOV), came to know a great deal about UAB and the UAB School of Nursing prior to joining the JBOV. She learned about UAB as part of the first class of Leadership UAB – young men and women from various corporate, civic, and volunteer backgrounds chosen to get indepth looks at UAB and its mission. "I thought, 'Wow! This great university here in our own backyard!' " said Ashelynn.

Regarding the UAB School of Nursing, Ashelynn learned from her mother, Karle Falkenburg, Chair of the School's Board of Visitors (BOV) from 2004 to 2006 and a current emeritus member. "Mom told me how important she felt it was to support UAB's nursing school," said Ashelynn. "I realized the differences nurses make, and how all of us need great nurses."

Ashelynn attended BOV fundraisers, viewing them as effective and fun. "I enjoyed watching mom wear her costumes," Ashelynn recalled. "Mom likes to do costumes. For one fundraiser she dressed as Marilyn Monroe, another year as a kangaroo, another year as a Polynesian woman."

A graduate of Jacksonville State University (JSU), where she was a member of the dance team for JSU Marching Southerners band, Ashelynn wanted a fashion merchandising career following graduation. A 1994 summer job at Robert Trent Jones (RTJ) Golf Trail at Silver Lakes led to her current position as buyer for the 10 retail shops that are part of the chain of golf courses along Alabama's well-known RTJ Golf Trail.

Beyond her job and JBOV leadership, Ashelynn is busy with church, family life, and additional community service. She's a member of Canterbury United Methodist Church. She coordinates volunteer activities for teenage girls who are presented as Birmingham Belles at Arlington Antebellum Home & Gardens. In addition, she has service with the Junior League of Birmingham and Birmingham Museum of Art's Members Board.

She enjoys spending time with family, including parents Karle and Frank, older siblings Caroline and Frank Jr., and younger brother Peyton. A teenager when Peyton was born, Ashelynn feels a nurturing big-sister tie to him. "We've had enjoyable family trips in conjunction with Peyton's spring breaks," said Ashelynn. "He's 22 now. I tell him, 'Hey, Petyon, you are more than welcome to stay in school as long as you want; we just need to keep having these wonderful spring-break trips!'

Ashelynn feels honored to serve as the JBOV's third Chair, as young women and men on the Board raise funds for pediatric nursing scholarships, mainly through their No- Show Ball fundraiser: "Our founding Chair, Mary Katherine Cabaniss, came up with this No-Show Ball concept that people really like – purchasing tickets to have food delivered to their homes."

About JBOV members, Ashelynn says: "When our group gets together, our faces light up when we see one another. We socialize, laugh, and have fun. But each of us knows we are there for this serious purpose to which we are all committed – raising funds to help the UAB School of Nursing educate great nurses."