Carolyn Rice has been in public service in Montgomery County for more than 15 years, first as County Treasurer and as a County Commissioner since 2019.
Her nominators noted one of her biggest contributions to the Dayton community and communities across Ohio was taking the idea of a Land Bank from a pilot project in Cuyahoga County to a tool that all parts of the state can use. Carolyn worked for three years with the Ohio General Assembly to expand the landbank idea and instituted the Montgomery County Land Reutilization Corporation as one of the first landbanks under the new legislation. To date, efforts of the Landbank have led to more than $106 million in investment in the community, spurring job creation and economic spinoff.
Carolyn also brought Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library to Montgomery County and worked with Ohio First Lady Fran DeWine to help get all 88 Ohio counties in the program. Today, almost 16,000 Montgomery County children are enrolled.
Carolyn has served as a mentor to two students through the College Promise program and mentors a participant in the Female Leadership Academy, sponsored by Montgomery County. She also has provided more informal coaching and support to women entering politics. She and her husband have hosted international students in their home and she is on the Dayton Council of World Affairs and the Holon, Israel committee of the Dayton Sister Cities Committee.
Prior to her service as an elected official, Carolyn worked 17 years in the private sector for a variety of organizations including Reynolds & Reynolds, LexisNexis, Dames & Moore, and Wright State University.
Some of her community awards include the National Conference for Community and Justice of Greater Dayton 2022 Humanitarian, Dayton Business Journal Power 50 honoree in 2019, 2020 and 2021, and Dayton International Peace Museum Peace Hero in 2016. She completed the Genesee Institute’s Community Land Reform Initiatives executive education program at Harvard University’s Kennedy School in 2009.
Carolyn and her husband Mike have been married for more than 45 years and have two children and four grandchildren.
“Carolyn Rice has made bringing the best ideas possible to every project she works on the hallmark of her career. Through work in the private sector, higher education, public sector, and elected office, Carolyn has worked tirelessly to help the community become the best it can be for all its members,” her nominators wrote.