Welcome to OARS

Ozarks AIDS Resources and Services

History of OARS

OARS began in the Fall of 1992, when a group of individuals came together to help their families, friends, and neighbors who were living with HIV/AIDS. There were representatives from various geographic regions in and around Carroll County including community leaders, business owners, educators, health care professionals, and individuals who had been diagnosed as having AIDS. Everyone agreed that we needed one organization established "for the purposes of providing educational services regarding HIV/AIDS and assistance to those individuals who have been diagnosed as being HIV positive and/or having AIDS."

A Constitution and By-Laws were written, the details were worked out, and the law offices of Epley, Epley, and France donated their time and legal expertise to establish this non-profit 501(c)(3) organization. The first Board of Directors included Dr. Alice Martinson as President, Lamont Richie as Vice President, Linda Parcher served as Treasurer, and Steven Colvin was Secretary. Other Board members were Mary Ellen Atchley, Sam Barnes, Mark Lenneville, Virginia Voiers, and Margaret Wallace. Carole Sturgis served in the position that became known as Executive Director, and she continues to serve in that capacity. One of our goals was to have a free clinic open by June 1, 1993, and we met that goal. Ms. Pat Jones, RN, was the Clinic Coordinator. Dr. Charles Horton has been our Clinic Director from the very beginning.

Since that time, we have been successful in receiving grants and awards from government agencies, businesses, and foundations. Our clinic continues to provide services, OARS continues to do education and training, and our volunteers continue to help whenever and wherever they are asked.