August 16th, 2017

Hyland's Heroes: Karen Forrest

Staff Report

Hyland's Heroes: Karen Forrest
Karen Forrest and family / photo provided by the Forrest family

The following feature is a part of a bi-weekly series, sponsored by Hyland Insurance. "Hyland's Heroes" is a series of profiles that spotlight Louisville area Catholic volunteers, coaches and administrators who assist athletic programs and teams, and help promote excellence in all aspects of sports. If you have a suggestion for Hyland’s Heroes, feel free to email Conor Revell (

St. Margaret Mary secretary Karen Forrest is this week’s Hyland’s Hero.

I got my start with SMM's athletic ministry about three years ago. I coached cross country and eventually joined the board. I've always loved sports and was looking for a good way to get more involved with the kids. My husband Brian coaches football and basketball, so he handles the coaching now! I enjoy being on more of the administrative and overall communication end of athletics.

What’s the connection with your faith and giving your time to student athletes?

My faith is what drives me to work so hard for our kids. I want them to learn the game they are participating in while demonstrating good sportsmanship and playing with a Christ- like attitude. I really strive for our kids to truly learn the meaning of winning and losing with grace. While the amount of volunteer hours can sometimes be difficult to manage, I never think of it as something I "have" to do. I view my time with the kids and the other volunteers as a blessing and I'm very grateful for the opportunity.

Who was the most influential person on your volunteer career? Why?

The most influential person on my volunteer career is most definitely my father! My dad, Bill Roby, is truly one of the most selfless, caring individuals you will ever know! As a child, I watched how much he gave of himself to my grade school (Ascension) through coaching and working on nearly every committee the parish ever had! To this day, he still volunteers dozens of hours every week. Currently he raises funds needed to help our military men and women who are in crisis situations. Through his efforts, he has touched countless lives and is truly an inspiration for me!

What are your major themes/principle as a volunteer?

My major themes or principals include grace, integrity, respect and kindness. I always hope to lead our organization with a strong emphasis on teaching our kids these themes while on and off the court and field.

What does your role bring your family?

The role brings my family a great deal of fun as we are always in the gym, at a game or talking sports! I also think my role provides for my kids a good example of why it's important to give of ones self without ever expecting anything in return. They know that there are times my decisions and actions have a big impact on our athletic program and they recognize how seriously I take that responsibility.

What are the fondest experiences or memories you have of your volunteer time?

My fondest memory involves an event we had towards the end of the school year. At a fish fry, we had a big ceremony to recognize all of our success on the basketball court! We had a DJ, games and trophy presentation that involved a bunch of our kids, parents, coaches and volunteers!  It was a memorable night and the amount of Mustang pride was awesome!


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