Saints Serving Others: Kirby (Thalenberg) Boyer, St. Mary’s Alumni Class of 2003
Kirby (Thalenberg) Boyer, a St. Mary’s School alumna (Class of 2003,) is the founder and owner of B. by Kirby, a fitness business that provides training and workouts to private clients, groups, high school teams (such as St. Mary’s girls lacrosse) and college athletes. Kirby, who historically has hosted up to 20 fitness classes a week, felt an immense call to do something for those impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. “I understand how it feels to be stretched financially,” she said. “When this virus struck, I saw my own friends who work in retail and restaurants get furloughed, it was really upsetting.”
Kirby knew she had to keep working and do whatever she could to help others in this time of crisis, so she turned to digital platform, Zoom, to continue providing her fitness classes. Simultaneously, due to the cancelation of her daughter’s own scheduled elective surgery, Kirby reached out to a friend who works at Anne Arundel Medical Center. She began to realize just how hard the virus was hitting medical providers financially with the dramatic shift away from performing elective surgeries as normal in an effort to focus on necessary COVID-19 treatment.
This realization prompted Kirby to provide her workouts and fitness classes for adults and kids on Zoom for free with the option for participants to contribute to a virtual “tip jar.” Proceeds from this “tip jar” go directly to health care workers and their immediate units at medical facilities throughout our area. In the first month alone, Kirby’s “tip jar” raised over $3,000. This money has fully funded meals for health care workers working night shifts in the ICU at Anne Arundel Medical Center, with more meal deliveries planned for units at The Johns Hopkins Hospital, Chesapeake Shock Trauma and beyond. In addition, Kirby uses this program to support local businesses by purchasing the meals from restaurants and grocers in the area such as Grauls Market.
When asked how St. Mary’s prepared her for this difficult time, Kirby noted that the school taught her the importance of service, truly fueling her need to help others through outreach and community service through her business and all aspects of her life. “The school taught us to have a sense of others before yourself,” Kirby said. “St. Mary’s ingrained how to not only have that feeling of wanting to help others, but to actually put action behind it and that’s an invaluable lesson.”
St. Mary’s Parish, a Catholic congregation served by the Redemptorist Order, includes St. Mary’s Church and St. John Neumann Mission Church. St. Mary's Elementary and High School located in downtown Annapolis, Maryland, serve students in grades Pre-Kindergarten through 12. Anchored in faith, rooted in tradition, and committed to excellence, our programs build lifelong learners who are servant leaders.