Michelle Rice has been a faithful volunteer with East Atlanta Kids Club since she moved to Atlanta in fall 2005. For the past 5 years, Michelle has dedicated countless gifts of time and resources to EAKC’s afterschool programs and events. She has also worked as a copy editor for CNN.com since moving to the city. The moment she moved to Atlanta and became a resident in the East Atlanta neighborhood, she immediately fell in love with the small, tightly-knit community. However, there were aspects of the community that she didn’t love, like crime, vandalism and litter. She decided that one of the best ways to start instilling pride in the neighborhood was to begin working with its kids. She soon became acquainted with Jill Sieder and the East Atlanta Kids Club and decided to volunteer. On her experience as a volunteer, Rice says, “I don’t have children of my own and hadn’t known a whole lot of kids, so when I met the Kids Club kids, I pretty
much treated them like everybody else I know. That seemed to work, except maybe when they wouldn’t fasten their seat belts or turn down the radio. Then I had to channel my mom and say things I never thought would come from my mouth, like, ‘Am I going to have to stop this car?’ So I guess I learned a few things.” She adds, “I’ll never forget the first little boy I met. He had a book about dogs and I had two dogs at home, so we immediately connected. He seemed so happy to have somebody paying attention to him. That boy is a teenager now and he’s growing into a funny, caring and responsible adult, just like so many of the other kids I’ve met at Kids Club. I’m really proud to have them as my friends.” Michelle has used her wealth of knowledge, experience and talents to impact the lives of the kids at EAKC. In 2000, she moved to London, England, and worked at the Daily Telegraph for five years as a project manager and systems editor. While living there, she was able to travel all over Europe and also to Russia — places she never thought she would see. Michelle also worked for nearly 20 years at the Austin American-Statesman newspaper in Austin, Texas, as a copy editor, news editor and systems editor. She graduated from The Ohio State University in 1981 with a bachelor’s degree in journalism. Michelle was born and raised in Ohio. Michelle is heavily involved in many projects in the East Atlanta neighborhood. As a DeKalb County master gardener, she volunteers at the local elementary school garden. Each year she organizes the neighborhood’s Earth Day tire roundup, the East Atlanta Strut Parade and the pictures with Santa event. In her spare time, Michelle enjoys working in her own garden, baking and playing with her pets. After she’s worn out from her busy activities, she relaxes by watching movies. Michelle has been married for 10 years to Michael Ryan, who supports Kids Club from behind the scenes.
Cbeyond broadened its support of Kids Club this fall to benefit Brownwood Park and
the entire community.
U.S. Micro Corporation has been a great friend to Kids Club for the past
three years, providing us with computer and networking equipment, financial support and most recently, the gift of a much-needed school bus.