Carolyn A. Clayton
Published: February 5, 2013
Carolyn A. Clayton, of Little Rock, died of sarcoma on Sunday, February 3, 2013. She was born February 20, 1942 in Los Angeles, California. Preceding her in death were her parents, USN (Ret.), Lt. Commander, Herbert W. and Margaret E. Clayton of Hazen, Arkansas and a granddaughter, Lauren Michelle Adams.
Carolyn was a certified broadcaster for the Armed Forces Radio and Television Services. She co-hosted "After Hours" at the AFRTS broadcast center in Okinawa, Japan. Her love of the arts led her to the Arkansas Arts Center where she served as registrar for the School of Art and Drama and performed musical comedy with the Arts Center Players theatre group.
In 1969 she began a career in corporate public relations under the mentorship of Steve Stephens at National Investors Life Insurance Company, followed by four years as executive director, Pulaski County Unit of the American Cancer Society.
In 1974 Carolyn moved to Prairie County to raise her family. Her community service work was highlighted by a musical comedy production benefit for the Prarie County Unit of the American Cancer Society. During this time, she studied journalism and creative writing at Phillips County Community College and from 1980 to 82 was editor of the Herald Publishing Company.
She returned to Little Rock as jobs developer for at-risk youth with Stepping Stone, Inc., working with juvenile court systems developing community service work as alternative to juvenile incarceration. In 1985 she was community development coordinator for SCAN (Suspected Child Abuse and Neglect). She was appointed by Governor Bill Clinton to the Governor's Task Force on Child Abuse serving as legislative chair.
She was named Director of Communications and Public Relations, St. Vincent Health System, Little Rock in 1996 where her responsibilities included creation of an effective program for meeting informational needs of employees and creation of program of public information relating to activities of St. Vincent. She also directed special events including "Cancer Survivors Day" with Robert Urich; "Women's Heart Day" featuring Dr. Nancy Snyderman, 1994 Health Care Reform Conference featuring Paul Duke, Gloria Borger, Haynes Johnson, Dr.Atul Gawande, Dr. Drew Kumpuris and Bill Bowen. Program development included St.Vincent "Shots for Tots" program featuring Betty Bumpers and serving as co-chair for St. Vincent's centennial celebration.
She became Executive Director of the Pulaski County Medical Society in 1999, a position she held until December of 2012 when she retired due to failing health. Carolyn published articles in national publications including "A Collaborative Publication Saves Money, Enhances Communications," Health Progress magazine, 1992; St. Vincent Employees Bring Aid to Tornado Victims," Cathjolic Health World, 1998 and "Say Good-bye to the Queen of Casseroles," Active Age magazine; "Heart Attack: A Physician's Story," Active Age magazine and "Women and Stress," Arkansas Gazette, 1991.
She was a member of West Little Rock Rotary Club, past president, Our House; Arkansas Chapter, Arthritis Foundation Board; Graduate of Greater Little Rock Chamber of Commerce Leadership Class XIII; president, Arkansas Society for Hospital Marketing & Public Relations; American Society of Healthcare Marketing & Public Relations; Arkansas Society of Association Executives; American Association of Medical Society Executives. She received the Dr. John McCullough Smith and outstanding Rotarian Award and Distinguished Service Award, Rotary District 6150, United Way Distinguished Service Award and Dr. Martin Luther King Award for outstanding community service.
Her family was her greatest joy. She also enjoyed traveling and considered a horseback riding trip to Ireland with her sister, Donna, the highlight of her European experiences.
Survivors include a sister, Donna Clayton and husband, Bruce of West Palm Beach, Florida; children, Lt. Col (U.S. Army Ret.), Timothy Williams and wife, Sheryl of Bentonville; Christen Matthews, Clayton Lindsey and wife, Rebekah all of Little Rock; grandchildren, Mandy Kordsmeier and husband, Justin of Rogers, Michael Williams and Mitchell Williams of Bentonville, Evan Jacobs, Olivia Lindsey and Laila Lindsey all of Little Rock; great-grandchild, Mabry Kordsmeier, and nephews, Zakery and William.
A memorial service will be held at Christ Episcopal Church on Tuesday, February 5, 2013 at 1:30 p.m. officiated by Rev. Dr. Joanna Seibert and Rev. Scott Walters followed by interment at DuValls Bluff Cemetery at 3:30 p.m. followed by a visitation/reception at St. Peter's Episcopal Church in Tollville, Ark.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Christ Episcopal Church, 509 Scott Street, Little Rock, Ark. 72201, St. Peter's Episcopal Church, Rt. 1 Box 110-A, DeValls Bluff, Ark. 72041 or the Wolfe Street Foundation, P.O. Box 3708, Little Rock, AR 72203. Arrangements by Ruebel Funeral Home, www.ruebelfuneralhome.com.