Beth Ann Keeton began her Red Cross career as a youth volunteer in the summer of 1967 at Fort Knox, Kentucky. After three summers helping swimming instructors as a Water Swim Aide, she continued volunteering during her college years at College of St. Benedict in St. Joseph, Minnesota. Growing up in a military family and then marrying into a military family she found many opportunities for service through Red Cross.
Her Red Cross service has taken her across the United States from Fort Bliss in Texas, to Fort Lewis in Washington state, to Fort Sill in Oklahoma, to Washington, DC, to Greensboro, and numerous other locations. In between those stops she also spent time at posts in Bremerhaven and Landstuhl, Germany. You can truly say that she has served from coast to coast and at duty stations around the world.
During her time with Red Cross Beth Ann has served on numerous boards, committees and task forces, and she has served in key leadership roles at the local, regional, state and national levels. Her service has touched on all Red Cross program areas from Service to the Armed Forces and International Services to Health and Safety, Disaster, Blood Services, Fundraising and Volunteer Services. In addition, she has been or currently is an instructor or trainer on topics and systems spanning all those areas.
If her volunteer service wasn’t enough, on several occasion over the years she has held interim paid staff positions both stateside and abroad. Some may even say she is glutton for punishment for her service as a Volunteer Auditor at National Headquarters and in chapters across the country.
In a period spanning from 1990 to 2001 Beth Ann served in support and leadership roles for the Red Cross with some of the biggest world events in recent history. Starting with the evacuation and repatriation of individuals fleeing Kuwait after the invasion by the Iraqi military; supporting our service members and their families during Desert Shield and the First Gulf War; repatriation of those fleeing the Philippines following the eruption of Mount Pinatubo; the Sarajevo Market Bombing during the Bosnian Conflict; the fall of the Berlin Wall; the bombing of the Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City, she was actually in a meeting close enough to feel the explosion; and she was in training within a mile of the Pentagon on 9/11 and witnessed first-hand the impact of Red Cross and was directly involved in supporting the response.
For her deep volunteer commitment to the mission of Red Cross and those we serve, Beth Ann has been recognized with numerous awards including the Clara Barton Award for Meritorious Volunteer Leadership on three separate occasions; Commander’s Award for Civilian Service and Ribbon on two occasions; Red Cross Award for Exceptional Volunteer Service; Commander’s Recognition Award for Volunteer Service; Molly Pitcher Award; Red Cross Partnership Award; and the Keeton family was recognized as the Military Family of the Year at Fort Sill in 1996.
Beth Ann has contributed a lifetime of service and touched many, many lives through her commitment to the mission and values of Red Cross as a volunteer, a generous donor, a staff member, a mentor and a leader over fifty-two years. Because of her integrity, record keeping and meticulous attention to detail, she only counts her time as 45 years due to time taken away from Red Cross. Either way her accomplishments put her in a category very few people have achieved or ever will, and is worthy of our thanks, appreciation and recognition.