In 1985 Carlin Morris began volunteering at Wilkinson Center,
sorting clothes. Moms would bring in cardboard drawings of their children’s feet to measure shoes for what they thought would fit. Carlin wondered how well a shoe this method worked and decided to start a shoe drive where the children were actually fitted.
About 500 children received new or used donated shoes at the first
event in 1987. The next year the drive was held in the church basement. Carlin went to Payless, bought new shoes and brought them to the church.
In 1990 the drive moved to a nearby Payless Shoe Source. Payless continues
to provide a discount and staff to help volunteers ensure each child
goes home with the perfect pair of shoes. Since that first effort in 1985,
over 36,000 children have received new shoes and socks to start the
school year. For many, these are the only new shoes they get each year.
From the beginning, Carlin has raised the funds and until recently
coordinated the volunteers. She has many beautiful stories from children
who have benefited. One is now a Payless manager who says that the shoes
she received when she was 11 were the first new shoes she ever owned.
A graduate from Emory University with a BA in Elementary
Education. Carlin taught in Georgia and Virginia before moving to Dallas
with her husband Charles. In 1978, Charles began his law practice and
Carlin taught at WW Bushman Elementary. Today, Charles is an attorney
with Husch Blackwell. They live in Lakewood with their two children and
three grandchildren, close by.
Carlin enjoys golf, bridge and hiking, both in Dallas and in Taos, NM.
She served on the board of East Dallas Cooperative Parish and chaired
the Wilkinson Center Board of Managers from 1985-1988. She is
co-founder of Friends of Wilkinson Center, a Past President and remains
an engaged and enthusiastic member. She chaired the Visionary Woman’s
Luncheon for Juliette Fowler Communities last year and has been a member of Lakewood United Methodist Church since 1983. Past
community activities include leadership positions with Promise House,Woodrow Wilson High School, JL Long Middle School, Lakewood United Methodist Church since 1983. Past
community activities include leadership positions with Promise House, Woodrow Wilson High School, JL Long Middle School, Lakewood Elementary School and the Lakewood Preschool PTA.