Randy Schools, the former President of the Recreation & Welfare Association at the National Institutes of Health, joined the organization at the very beginning back in 1983. The R&W was an employee services organization, so he knew a lot about coordinating programs and raising money.
“Kathy Russell and Charles Butler at NIH asked me to provide leadership to the organization and introduced me to the Bakers. I was on Special Love’s first board of directors and have remained involved in some way for over 40 years.”
Randy helped teach the first swimming lessons at Camp Fantastic and organized the recreation. His favorite activities were baseball and CAMPFIRES!
“Special Love provides the warmth of a campfire all year long and it’s the people in the organization and the volunteers who make it all possible.”
He, along with Bob Bingaman of the NIH Ski Club, also helped start Special Love’s winter ski program for teens and young adults in 1987. Building off the success of that venture, they put together a 3-day ski weekend for families at Canaan Resort in 1989. Those programs will merge in 2023 and are expected to generate the highest attendance of any Special Love program all year.
In the past, Special Love sponsored Orioles outings, circus events, and various fundraising dinners, all of which Randy coordinated. He worked with a lot of different employee and civic groups to raise money for camp.
Randy is now retired and living on Maryland’s Eastern Shore, but his love for Special Love still endures:
“Special Love and Camp Fantastic changed my life— camp is a place of caring, joy, and hope. When I think of Special Love, I think of goodness and the many battles that children and families face to conquer cancer.”