Retirement is good for Shubert

Published 3:57 pm Friday, February 4, 2011

By SANDRA THAMES / Community Columnist

Growing up in rural Walker County in the ‘40s and ‘50s and being raised by strict Nazarene parents put “starch in the backbone” of today’s subject, Carol Shubert.

Her father ran a country store, so she grew up dusting merchandise, bagging, sweeping, pumping gas and just whatever needed doing. At 15 years of age she went to work at V. J. Elmore in Jasper and from there to Engels Department Store and Walkers Dry Goods. At the age of 19 she married James Shubert.

Daughter, Tonia Contorno, lives in LaGrange, Ga. and serves as group coordinator of secondary education for Troup County, Ga. Only grandchild, Jody Contorno, currently lives in Orlando, Fla. hoping to fulfill his lifelong dream of an internship with Universal Studios. Son, Tony, lives in Decatur, runs a boutique and also announces Arabian Horse Shows all over the world.

In 1966 her husband’s job brought them to Alabaster. Raising her children kept her busy for several years, then in 1978 the late Judge Tommy Snowden asked Carol to come to work for him in Columbiana at the probate Office. Several years later, she opened the first branch office in the old Food World Plaza.

Later, because of the need for more space, the new, now functioning County Services Building was opened where Carol remained the manager, the go-to girl. In 2004 she returned to Columbiana and retired in 2005. Though Carol has had some very rough years, she always greets you with a big smile, a vocal greeting and is the life of the party. She was “happily divorced,” she said in 1998.

Alabaster resident Carol Shubert has lived in the city since 1966, and has enjoyed traveling all over the world. (Special/Sandra Thames)

Shubert is now involved in the many forms of benevolence with the Elks Lodge, loves ballroom dancing, works the polls and travels extensively. Redecorating her home and helping her son Tony with his boutique and salon, Tallulah’s in Decatur, keep this lady plenty busy.

Shubert has been to Australia, New Zealand, Fiji, all over the Mediterranean, England, Wales, Scotland and Alaska. Cruising or flying makes no difference to her. Just go!

She is responsible for no one but herself, though she regularly visits her 94-year-old mother at the nursing home in Cordova.

“I am very fortunate to have my health, my friends and my freedom,” Shubert said. Life for Shubert is good.

Community columnist Sandra Thames can be reached by e–mail at