Born in Connecticut Marylou Sullivan Klein has a B.A. from the University of Connecticut where she was member of Phi Beta Kappa, and an M.L.S from Long Island University. She retired from her position as a department head from a large suburban public library in Suffolk County, Long Island, New York, and has lived in Dunnellon, Florida since 1996.
She became a volunteer at Rainbow Springs State Park in 1998, and has been active there since. As a member of the Friends of Rainbow Springs she has served as Vice President, chair of several large events, and is currently Secretary. As a volunteer, she was invited to attend four Florida Park Service’ Ranger Academies as a volunteer assistant. Then the Director of Florida State Parks asked her to represent all of the Citizen Support Organizations (CSOs) and volunteer as ‘CSO and Volunteer Ambassador’, where she traveled and became familiar with and worked with volunteers around the state. She served in this capacity for three years. During this period, she was an ex-officio member of the Friends of Florida State Parks, working on the Awards Committee. She was elected as voting member and then became Chair of the Awards Committee, where she still serves, and serves as the Secretary for Friends of Florida State Parks. In 2005, Marylou was awarded Florida Park Service’s Outstanding Volunteer of the Year, received the Director’s Special Service Award in 2011, in addition to the Irene DeLaby Award for volunteering 10,000 hours to the Florida State Parks.
She has been a Florida Master Gardener since 2000, and received a communications award from the University of Florida-IFAS, and Florida Friendly Landscaping (FFL) Volunteer of the Year in 2013, and currently serves as volunteer Committee Chair of the FFL Committee.