Kathleen Ruffle is an East Coast Native, born in Laconia, New Hampshire. Since graduating from University of New Hampshire in 1993, she has lived and traveled all over the world. After receiving her BA in English Literature, Kathleen entered the Peace Corps, and spent two years as an English teacher in Botswana, Southern Africa. As soon as her feet touched the red soil of the country’s Kalahari Desert, she knew experiencing other cultures was going to be a part of her future.
Following the Peace Corps, she went on to travel to South Africa, Malawi, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Mauritius, Togo, and finally Thailand. Through these adventures, Kathleen recognized her interests in teaching English to speakers of other languages. (TESOL) and obtained her MA in TESOL at Teachers College, Columbia University. Kathleen took Masters coursework in the evenings while teaching full time at a public school in the South Bronx. During her four years there she recognized the desperate need for afterschool programs, specifically athletic programs, for the students to participate in. Her students didn’t have the opportunity to run out their frustrations, or work as a team to score a goal. Thus, Kathleen found funding for the first track and field team, an all-girls athletic club, and a middle school outdoor education program. These programs became an integral part of the students lives, and are still in place today.
Kathleen relocated this past year to San Francisco, and continued working both as an ESL teacher and after school program developer. Creating athletic programs for youth gives Kathleen energy, as athletics have always been an essential part of her own life. She played field hockey for University of New Hampshire Division I team, has completed six marathons, four half-ironman triathlons and is currently training for her first Ironman. Kathleen loves living on the West Coast (the New England winters started to get to her) and looks forward to working with the Project Active team!