We lost a wonderful friend with the passing of Nancy Berla on May 10, 2020.
Nancy joined our board in 2001 and became our grant writer, working closely with the Howard County Arts Council and the Maryland State Arts Council. She was also responsible for the cookies enjoyed during conversations with the artists after each concert. She was committed to community service for her entire life and shared her many talents with other Howard County arts organizations, several public schools, retirement communities, and social service organizations.
Audience members from The Residences at Vantage Point knew that they could count on her for tickets to Sundays At Three concerts, and to arrange transportation for those who needed help getting to the concerts and returning home.
Nancy was also a musician. She played piano duets and in larger chamber groups, was an accomplished recorder player in a recorder consort, and organized a weekly sing-along at The Residences.
An avid reader and life-long learner, Nancy organized at least three book clubs, including one in Spanish, and a Spanish language club which she led by assigning readings for weekly discussion.
Nancy also served as a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA). She observed and evaluated the care of many neglected or abused children in foster homes or under supervised custody of a parent. She submitted monthly reports to the Howard County Circuit Court and remained with each child’s case until it was closed, and the child was in a safe, permanent home. She received a CASA Volunteer of the Year award for her work.
The list goes on… Nancy tutored children and adults, and was a board member of A-OK, an organization that trains and assigns mentors for Howard County public school students. At Running Brook Elementary School, she developed FACTS (Friends and Community Together at School), a program to promote parental involvement in the school, arranging for transportation for parents, translation when needed, and childcare for younger children so parents could be active in their child’s education. She was named a “Daily Point of Light” in 1998 by the Points of Light organization. The Howard County Board of Education gave her its Friends of Education award in 2001. And she was an avid tennis player.
Sundays At Three and all of Howard County benefited from the decades she devoted to enriching the life of our community.