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Gorman ready to start at Rambling River Center

Nicole Gorman took over Tuesday as coordinator at Farmington’s Rambling River Center.

Rambling River Center members were able to make a new friend this week, when Lakeville resident Nicole Gorman started her new job as senior activities coordinator for the center.

Gorman replaces Missie Kohlbeck, who had been in that role for 17 years before taking a recreation specialist position with the Farmington Parks and Recreation department.

Gorman has been working in senior programming with the city of Minnetonka since 2009. Over the past few years, her job expanded to include more challenges. At the end of her career with Minnetonka, she was the senior and programs manager, plus she did youth programming and was in charge of the 14 warming houses in Minnetonka and Hopkins.

But she’s also the mother of a young son, and she wanted to get closer to home.

“I was looking for new challenges. I was ready for a new change, and (Farmington) seemed like the right fit,” Gorman said.

Gorman has known Kohlbeck for a number of years. The two met through the Minnesota Association of Senior Services, and have visited on numerous occasions over the years. It turns out, they both have a similar background. Both received their undergraduate degrees from Minnesota State University, Mankato.

It was her time in Mankato that steered Gorman toward a career in senior services. While there, she started volunteering at an assisted living facility, and was hired on later. At the same time, she was pursuing her degree in park and recreation, with an emphasis on therapeutic recreation.

After graduation, she worked in senior housing, spending half of her time working with assisted living and the other with independent living. She then went on to senior center programming.

She’ll take a few days to get settled in, of course. Parks and rec director Randy Distad has a whole week of orientation planned for Gorman. She’ll meet Rambling River Center members and spend some time just getting to know new co-workers at city hall, and getting to know the community, as well.

She was in Farmington last week to sit in on a Rambling River Center advisory board meeting. It was interesting, she said, and she’s anxious to start working with the board.

But Gorman’s next steps will come one at a time.

“I want to build upon what Missie has done,” she said. “I have a lot of ideas, but I don’t know if all of them will work here in Farmington or not. It will be interesting to learn how it all fits.”

Because Monday was a holiday, Gorman’s first day at Rambling River Center was Tuesday.

Michelle Leonard

Michelle Leonard joined the Woodbury Bulletin staff in November, 2014, after 14 years covering news for the Bulletin's sister publication, the Farmington Rosemount Independent Town Pages.  Michelle earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Mass Communications: News-Editorial from Mankato State University in 1991. She is an active member of the American Legion Auxiliary Clifford Larson Unit 189 of Farmington, and served as the 2014-15 Third District President to the American Legion Auxiliary Department of Minnesota. Michelle is also the volunteer coordinator for the Minnesota Newspaper Museum which is open annually during the Minnesota State Fair. She has earned Minnesota Newspaper Association awards in Investigative Reporting, Local News Coverage, Feature Photography and Column Writing. 

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