Carrie was born in Kansas City, Missouri and baptized in the Blue Ridge United Methodist Church. Her father was an engineer at Burns McDonnell. When he was sent across the state to start a branch office, their family moved to the West Suburbs of Saint Louis. Carrie and her twin sister, Katie, grew up in Manchester United Methodist Church and would be confirmed there.
Carrie graduated from Crossroads College Preparatory School and moved to Illinois to attend Knox College. After graduation from Knox she spent a year along the Mexican-U.S. border providing humanitarian relief to undocumented migrants as a Young Adult Volunteer for the Presbyterian Church.
She applied to Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary to begin studies in fall 2008. She had some extra time between her mission work and seminary. Her sister was completing a stint teaching in Chile, so Carrie met her sister and they backpacked through South America for six months. Her time on the border and backpacking with her sister were life-changing experiences that would inform her understanding of poverty, cultures, and migration.
While attending Garrett-Evangelical she met Scott Carnes and they married eighteen months later. Carrie currently serves as the pastor of Trinity Lutheran Church in Galesburg, IL and her husband in the pastor in Abingdon, nearby. They have two young children, two dogs, and Carrie is working on her Doctor of Ministry at Candler School of Theology at Emory University.