STORYTELLER BIOGRAPHY

LESLIE A. COHEN

Stafford, VA

leslieandkids@yahoo.com

INTRODUCTORY INFORMATION

I am originally from Oklahoma and though I have lived in many states and countries, I’m still very proud to call this state my home.  My husband of thirteen years serves proudly in the U.S. Army and is a veteran of “Desert Storm” and “Iraqi Freedom.”  We have two fabulous children Peter and Lori who have been my biggest inspiration for storytelling.  They make me laugh, they make me cry, but most of all they make me, me.

EDUCATIONAL BACKGROUND

M.S. Candidate School of Library and Information Sciences
University of North Texas
Denton, TX

B.A. Organizational Communication
University of Oklahoma, Norman, Oklahoma
College of Liberal Arts

STORYTELLING INTERESTS

I have always been one to bring a good story to any event or occasion.  I tend to be very animated in everyday conversation and I love having a good laugh with my friends and family.

I am currently an elementary school librarian and storytelling is a part of my daily routine.  Children are very comfortable with curling up in my lap and I think my over exaggerated expressions draw them to me.  Children’s stories are by far my favorite stories to tell.  They are easy for me to recall and my audience is typically less critical of my performance. 

I admire those who tell stories based on their family and ethnic background.  We have so much to learn from each other and those who can bring their heritage to life for the rest of us, truly share a special gift.

MISCELLANEOUS INFORMATION

I am a collector of antiques.  To me, every piece has a story to tell.  I often wonder who cherished each item when it was new, and who did they wish to give it too when it was time to pass their history along.  I think I must have received this love of antiques from my grandmother, Olive Hargrove.  Having grown-up in Oklahoma during the depression, she cherished every belonging she had.  When it was time to pass her things on, she gave everything she owned to specific people for very specific reasons.  She took great pride in deciding whose hands her history would fall in to.

Aside from my family, one of my greatest joys is doing mission work with my church.  I love painting houses and churches, repairing porches, planting gardens and rebuilding hope in others.

Typically the most surprising thing that people learn about me is one of my greatest accomplishments and fondest memories.  While living in Texas, I was asked to be the Chapin High School Girls Wrestling Coach in El Paso, Texas.  I have never been so inspired by a group of young women.  My girls were the epitome of muscle, beauty and grace all rolled up into one.  I’m still so proud of them.