by MICHELLE TREMBLAY | photo by Lauren Nygard Photography

Education Advocate

volunteer02Laura Bodensteiner and her family – husband Brian, daughter Gretchen, and twin sons Bennett and Wesley – have resided in Carlsbad for the past three years. “We moved to Carlsbad from Los Angeles to be near family and have access to great public schools,” shared Laura. The Bodensteiner children attend Poinsettia Elementary, where Gretchen attends the second grade and the boys are in kindergarten. Laura, who currently holds the role of secretary for the PTA, is very involved in the school – she has written grant proposals for the PTA, has used her graphic design skills to design publicity pieces, and has served as the Carlsbad Educational Foundation (CEF) liaison for the school. However, her most notable contribution to the school has been bringing back its art program. “At the end of Gretchen’s kindergarten year, I found out that there would be no more art,” recalled Laura. “I couldn’t just sit back and let that happen! I headed right into our principal’s office to find out what happened and what I could do to fix it.” And “fix it” she did. Over that summer, Laura initiated the Save Art at Poinsettia fundraising campaign which ultimately raised about $8,000 from parents and community members. “That year, Poinsettia PTA was able to fund the art teacher and add a science teacher for the entire school,” explained Laura.

Today, Laura continues to be an advocate for providing students with well-rounded educations. This year, she plays a big part in the school fundraisers, which include: Parent Night Out, Open House & Student Art Show on May 28, and the Student Art Exhibit at Carlsbad City Library starting in May. Laura encourages those interested to get involved in any way. “There are opportunities to get involved at any level of time commitment,” noted Laura, “from a couple hours volunteering at a one-time event to ongoing school opportunities!”

In her downtime, Laura enjoys crafting, going to the beach, and taking her family on adventures. “Yosemite, Joshua Tree, and Glacier National Park were some of last year’s adventures,” said Laura. But Laura finds it especially rewarding to give back to Poinsettia Elementary and to the community. When asked about one wish she could grant for the school, Laura replied, “To not have to worry about raising enough money to give our students all the programs they deserve. I wish our school district could pay for art, science, and P.E. teachers and coaches for all our Carlsbad students!”


Name: Laura Bodensteiner
Community: Seabright
Volunteer Affiliation: Poinsettia PTA
Profession: Stay-at-Home Mom, Graphic Designer
Family: Husband – Brian; Daughter – Gretchen (8); Sons – Bennett and Wesley (5)
Hobbies: Crafts, beach time, going on adventures with my family


Group: Poinsettia Elementary PTA
Purpose: The goal of the Poinsettia PTA is to provide a balanced education for all students. Fundraising and donations play a big part in our ability to fund programs such as weekly art, science, P.E. Classes, additional technology instruction, and much more.
Contact: poinsettiapanthers@gmail.com