Beth Bales is an Aurora native, who, while appreciating her Aurora roots now considers herself a Genevan who loves her town. She is a graduate of West Aurora High School and has a journalism degree from Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism, which makes her a long-suffering (and sometimes absolutely giddy) Wildcat fan. Go Purple and White!
She has more than 30 years of experience as a professional writer, in a career that's not followed a linear path. After 13 years at The Beacon-News in Aurora -- including a 5 1/2-year stint as the Geneva reporter, stationed in a now long-shuttered branch office at 115 W. State St., and then another several years as a copy editor at the Aurora office. From there she moved to the Kane County Chronicle, and eventually began work as a public relations consultant to new-home builders. In the intervening 18 or so years, she's added marketing consultant and coordinator, freelance writer and longtime columnist (11 years) for the Daily Herald, plus a few more job titles to the resume. She is the new part-time communications director for Baker Memorial United Methodist Church in St. Charles.
Besides being a dedicated Wildcat fan, she also is a community and school volunteer. She was treasurer for several years for Rising Star Theatre Co. and was a member of Geneva Academic Foundation, plus served as vice president and president of both the Harrison Street School and Geneva High School PTOs and led the Joint PTO Council for the entire Geneva 304 District. She loves reading above all other leisure pursuits, plus enjoys politics, cooking -- and is looking forward to the day when a new effort is met with enthusiasm instead of suspicion from the younger members of the family -- movies and theater. She thinks sports get way too much attention in this world even while cheering on the Wildcats, Geneva Vikings and individual athletes she knows, and wonders, why isn't academic or artistic achievement valued as highly?
Beth lives on Geneva's near East Side (that means she can walk downtown if she wants -- it's handy for Swedish Days!) with her husband, Steve Olson, a Geneva native, Marmion Military Academy grad and chief of the Geneva Fire Department; their three daughters, Emma, a recent Illinois State University graduate; Torie, a junior at Marquette University in Milwaukee; and Anne, a senior at Geneva High School; plus three cats.