In Memoriam: Carol Ann Gesme

Carole Ann Gesme

Carol Ann Gesme passed away on May 29, 2022, at the age of 84. She was a NCFR member for 28 years and a Certified Family Life Educator (CFLE) for 20 years.

Ms. Gesme was the author of several books and articles on topics related to child development and effective parenting. She also developed therapeutic and educational games, tools, and resources for families through "I Wanna Be Me,” a business she created.  

Ms. Gesme earned her Bachelor of Science in elementary education from the University of Minnesota and taught at an elementary school before deciding she wanted to teach parenting classes. She earned a master’s degree in human development from St. Mary’s University of Minnesota and became both a CFLE and a Certified Dependency Counselor.

Ms. Gesme used the knowledge she gained to help others as a parent educator across many different occupations. She served as an adjunct professor at St. Mary’s and Concordia University, St. Paul, where she taught courses in child development and parenting education. She also worked with inmates in a women’s prison system; trained teachers across the U.S. in the federal drug prevention program, Project CHARLIE; and provided individualized care and support to others in her church community as a Stephen Minister.

Her book Life is a Celebration received the Midwest Book Award for Religion and Philosophy in 2000. She received the Outstanding Advisor award from St. Mary’s in 2001. Ms. Gesme also received the University of Minnesota’s College of Education and Human Development Alumni Society Larry Wilson Award in 2005.

You can read her full obituary here.


If you learn of an NCFR member or CFLE who has passed away, please email [email protected].