Katie & Matt Gelb: the Perfect Love Story for Valentine’s Day


Owen Martzke, Staff Writer, Advanced Journalism

Author Emery Allen once said, “Do you think the universe fights for souls to be together? Some things are too strange and strong to be coincidences.”

Humans are amazed at the idea that in our everyday life the smallest of actions and strangest coincidences have an extraordinary effect on our lives. NDA Librarian Katie Gelb knows this firsthand, for it was because of a series of chance occurrences that she met her husband, Matt.

Mrs. Gelb had just moved from Green Bay to Boston to attend graduate school. It was a brand-new experience for her as she did not know a single person in the area.

“On the first day of classes, the first person I met was Siobhan. She was in my program and from a small town west of the city. She quickly became my best friend,” said Mrs. Gelb.

Siobhan and her roommate, Marybeth, had a small apartment in Boston and Mrs. Gelb spent a lot of time hanging out there as they had lots of friends in the city. Marybeth actually grew up near Boston and knew the area very well. In order to give Mrs. Gelb a true introduction, they decided to throw a party in their apartment.

The day of the party, Marybeth attended the Boston College football game. Before the game she met up with her friend, Tim, at a tailgate. Tim introduced her to the host of the tailgate, Matt Gelb.

“Since the tailgate was so amazing, Marybeth, reciprocating the kindness, invited Tim and Matt back to her apartment that night for our party,” added Mrs. Gelb

Katie, Siobhan, and Marybeth hosted the party and were dressed in “crazy party outfits,” as Mrs Gelb put it.

“When Matt arrived, Marybeth and Tim introduced us because I was new and came from Wisconsin just like Matt. After we talked for a very long time, he asked for my number. The following weekend was our first date,” she said.

It was during her second semester that Mrs Gelb knew Matt was the perfect guy for her.

“I had a Thursday night class, and one night, he was waiting for me outside when my class ended. He came to pick me up, so I didn’t have to take the subway back to my neighborhood and walk home in the dark.”

The rides home became a regular occurrence, and often Matt would bring dinner or groceries when needed. The rides home may not seem like much, but to Mrs Gelb, “It was a pretty meaningful gesture since he lived in Beacon Hill.”

Beacon Hill is a very old neighborhood in Boston and only has street parking. If you left your parking spot, the chances of finding another when you got back were very slim. It was not uncommon to spend upwards of an hour looking for a spot that was probably many blocks away from your residence.

The two dated for about a year and a half before Matt proposed. After Mrs. Gelb finished graduate school, they decided to move back to Wisconsin. That is when she got a part-time job teaching English at NDA. Matt got a job working as a consultant for a company called Wipfli.

After a year at NDA, she got a new job at another school in the area and continued to teach there for a few years. After the birth of twin daughters, Mrs. Gelb became a stay-at-home mom and cared for her children. A few years later she gave birth to a son named David.

“After David began preschool, I got a call from the principal asking me to come back to NDA. This is my fifth year back,” she said.

Mrs. Gelb enjoys working at NDA with her fellow librarian, Mrs. Treena Leonard. Their family is also very involved here as Matt is an NDA superfan. He used to be an assistant golf coach under Mr. Brian Bobinski, coach girls in the Future Tritons basketball program and play on the faculty intramural basketball team. While he has stepped away from those activities, he is always very excited to attend NDA events.

Looking back, it is crazy to think that if Marybeth, Siobhan, and Katie had not thrown that party or if Marybeth not gone to Tim’s tailgate, that Katie and Matt would have never been able to chat about their coincidental Wisconsin roots and spark up a beautiful relationship that still grows strong today.

With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, maybe it is time to reflect and be grateful for the opportunities you were given to meet your one true love. On the other hand, maybe it is time to seize control of chances given to you and create a love story of your own.