Carol Harper

'SWF videographer whose hobby is death'...That's how the personals ad read that Barbara wrote as we drove north from Miami in 1987 in my new MR2 sports car. (Barbara Swers, my best friend at SHS is STILL my best friend, living in Hawaii as Dr. Barbara Swers!!!) Caught up in gales of laughter, we couldn't finish it. Oddly, it remains unfinished but still true all these many years later, except I am in communications, and only occasionally make videos. Yes, my hobby is death. I am a hospice worker, but my passion lies in conducting funerals to help people through the grieving process. (I never got to be the rock star I would like to have been, so funerals are my way of getting on stage, if you will.) I love it!

My life has taken many unusual paths, but has stayed on the same overall course throughout. I started my own media production company in 1978, which is now a Strategic Communications business focusing on the delivery of complex messages to targeted audiences (watch for mediawrights.com, but don't hold your breath...the shoemaker's children syndrome....). Currently I work on issues ranging from campus planning for MIT to the end of youth homicides and gang violence in Boston (watch for the web site bostonstrategy.com). I am Chair of the Cambridge Arts Council and sit on the board of a company now located in Seattle that was, in fact, the company my father was President of, and caused us to live in Scarsdale. How weird is that?!

Carol Harper Bike High SchoolThis summer, I adopted a fourteen year old boy whom I have known since he was six. (Lyden and I spent last night driving to his 15th birthday party, listening to and comparing notes on Stevie Ray Vaughn's guitar riffs-how much happier could I be?) I have helped raise him, his sister and brother all these years (although they live in Miami) and am richly rewarded by sharing their lives as they develop into amazing people.

The photo is of me in Miami this spring (you would think I traveled only there, but I actually go other places!) after my 'daughter's' terrific Sweet 16 party!

So, I am still the SWF videographer whose hobby is death. Only now, I've traded in the MR2 for a RAV4 and I was recently named "Best 'Metal' Garage Band Mom in Cambridge", (admittedly by a biased party, my kid Lyden). Anyway, it's been a long, adventurous, and often arduous road, but amazing all the same. Who can ask for more?

Carol