Liz Campbell is a nurse by education and worked as a Legislative Aide and campaign manager. She is a longtime community activist, serving on the Housing Authority Board, one of the founders of the Women’s Fund of Omaha, and was the Executive Director of the Girl Scouts. Liz joined CASA's Board of Directors in 2012. Liz has four grown daughters.
Tell me how you first got involved in with CASA .
- I got involved with CASA because a good friend of mine had been involved for years and asked me. I stay because I fulfill commitments! I grew up in a family where community service was part of what you did. In 1966 when I moved to Omaha, I got involved in inner-city issues. I was watching the Civil Rights fight happen.
What was your first impression of CASA?
- My first impression of CASA was how committed everyone was: Board, staff, CASA Volunteers. How serious they were about their role, and how important they thought it was.
What has surprised you most about working with CASA?
- How few people know what it is and what it does. In my first year of sending out notes for the annual fund drive, people who are really engaged and involved in the Omaha community had no idea about CASA. This has changed over time.
What do you find most challenging about the child welfare system?
- There are two things: first, how unaware the general population is about the need, and how reluctant the state seems to be to spend the needed resources to address the problems. Turnover of caseworkers could be addressed if we were willing to put more resources behind the work.
What's the best thing to happen since you started working/volunteering with CASA?
- What we’ve been able to do with help from another Board Member in PR/community awareness/public campaigns. Until three years ago, we hadn’t do ne this. Support from the community has been amazing. The staff has tripled and we’ve served many more children because of this.
What do you wish other people knew about CASA?
- I wish other people had the opportunity to hear the stories (mission moments) that we hear at Board meetings about the tremendous difference one person, a CASA Volunteer, can make in a child’s life. Some of these are small things to us when thinking of our own children: attending parent teacher conferences, for example. The friend who got me involved still helps the family she was the CASA for years later. What a profound difference it makes in someone’s life to have someone to depend on.
What would you tell someone who is thinking about donating or volunteering?
- You can be absolutely certain it will make a difference in someone else’s life. The commitment a CASA Volunteer makes is impressive. The amount of time in training and with the child and others on the case- CASA volunteers are very unselfish and committed people.
What do you think will change about CASA over the next five years?
- CASA will continue to grow; our goal is to serve all of the children the judges feel could benefit- 900 children, maybe more. We will continue to get bigger and better!