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Have You Met?

If you like hearing about people who truly “walk the talk” and “do the right thing”, then Patty Jenkins is someone that fits the bill to a T. It was a pleasure watching Patty get such joy (she really was having fun…) out of being able to continuously up her live auction bid – and win, all for the sake of helping Arapahoe House. Patty made her generous presence be known at their recent “Pillars of the Community” event.

Patty Jenkins, in her unassuming, modest way, makes giving of herself look effortless, but those who know her say she gives because she genuinely cares - and has a compassionate heart. Patti has found that giving “help and hope” to people in need connects us together as human beings - and she knows it takes a commitment to serve others to make that kind of a difference.

After being thrown a few of life’s curves, Patty is courageous and resilient - and knows how to get back in the game of life full speed ahead. It just proves you can’t keep a good woman down.

Such a lovely lady, who also happens to be a super-mom and grandma, Patty appears to be in a “value-driven, introspective place” after her recent divorce. With a chance for new beginnings and new experiences, Patty Jenkins is moving forward with a fresh lease on life. Patty enthusiastically says: “After 36 years of marriage, I now have a completely new focus. If I could live the rest of my life just being healthy and full of joy, nothing would make me happier.”

What charitable organizations are you involved with at this time? I’ve been a member of the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) for 10 years; and I’ve recently been involved with or have contributed to: The Children’s Diabetes Foundation, American Heart Association, Arapahoe House, and the Kempe Foundation. I’ve been a longtime supporter of Planned Parenthood and the March of Dimes. I have a personal connection to the March of Dimes: I am RH Negative, and when giving birth, I benefited directly because of the research done by the March of Dimes.

What charitable event do you really look forward to attending each year? The Brass Ring Luncheon for Children’s Diabetes is an 800 women strong event that’s always fun and elegant. I buy a table for 10 and usually invite my daughters – and friends I haven’t seen for a while - to join me. It’s just a fun ladies day!

What do you consider your proudest achievement? That all 7 of my children have attended college and 6 of them have graduated.

Do you have a favorite vacation spot? Canyon Ranch Health Resort & SPA in Tucson, Arizona. I’ve been there many times. It’s such a wonderful, spiritual and nourishing place to go when you need to change the focus of your life.

If you were to write an autobiography, what would the title be? “The Extraordinary Life of an Ordinary Person.” I am going to write a book someday….

Is there a book you have read that really inspired you that you can recommend to others? Yes! “Eat, Pray, Love” the incredible book by Elizabeth Gilbert. Actually, Elizabeth Gilbert came to town last month, and all of us - my daughters and my daughters-in-laws - went to see her. She was just wonderful. Her book is a fun, spiritual, beautiful book. Read it with a highlighter!

Who is the most interesting person you have ever met? Dr. Robert Maurer. I met him at Canyon Ranch in Tucson. He wrote a book called: “One Small Step Can Change Your Life… The Kaizen Way” – it’s about the Japanese philosophy of gradual improvements over time – the antitheses to unpredictable change. I like this passage from the book: “While we busily and fiercely pursue the many roads to success, we often lose sight of the four elements of the destination: health, relationship, work and the peace and passion to enjoy them.”

What do you consider a priceless gift? If there were ever a fire in my house, aside from pictures, I’d grab the “Magic Fairy Godmother Wand” that a friend gave me as a gift. It’s in a glass case and has “Queen of the Fairy Godmothers” engraved on it. I’d also take any of the little mementos that the kids made.

What word best describes your life right now? Joyful.

Can you share with us one of your fondest childhood memories? When I was 7 years old, I got (the old fashioned clamp on kind with a key) roller skates for my birthday. I really wanted them bad, but wasn’t sure if I would actually get them. Sitting in my living room is a picture of me taken on that day. The look on my face was one of “pure bliss.”

What is something your parents taught you that you have never forgotten? That any kind of prejudice is wrong – irregardless of race, religion or where a person comes from. It wasn’t tolerated in my family. We are all the same and should be treated the same. And, that’s how I raised my children.

Do you have a quote or saying that has helped guide you through life? One by one of my favorite people, Eleanor Roosevelt: “In the long run, we shape our lives, and we shape ourselves. The process never ends until we die. And the choices we make are ultimately our own responsibility.”

What are you focusing on the most these days? Service to the community. Trying to figure out where I can help out the most. Also spending lots of time with my children and grandchildren; and finding out who I am for the first time – it’s a unique new experience.

What is your greatest strength? Perseverance. I’m a rock, and I don’t give up!

What do you still want to learn how to do? Speak French and Play the Guitar.

What has made you so interested in, and committed to, charitable giving? I have felt strongly about giving back and doing good things for others my whole life.

Do you have any regrets? NO.

What’s in the future for Patti Jenkins? To stay healthy, travel more, live to see my grandchildren grow and prosper, and live the rest of my life the way I’m supposed to.

How would you like to be remembered by future generations? That I was silly, loved lots of whimsy, wasn’t afraid of hard work, and always tried to do the right thing.