Worthy Point of View: Volunteers deserve gratitude for serving community

This time of year, we like to take time to reflect and share our thanks with those who have made an impact in our lives and our community.

Worthington is blessed to have dedicated citizens who are driven to help others and give back to the community in which they live. Whether it is by volunteering in our schools or libraries, for service or charity organizations and community groups, or by serving on city boards or commissions, these volunteers give their precious time and expertise and play a vital role in supporting all those things that make our community special. They all deserve special recognition and our thanks.

Robyn Stewart
Robyn Stewart

We see many examples of people who are called to public service in the city of Worthington, many of whom have served long tenures with the city. We reflect on the life and service of former Mayor, Vice Mayor and City Council member Jim Lorimer, who recently passed away. He lived a life of service, not only giving 52 years to the city of Worthington, but also inspiring so many through his work to bring equal rights and opportunities to women in sports, as a coach and mentor, always encouraging others to work hard and live their best lives. He lived by this example, and we are grateful for all he did to lift up and inspire others.

We also recognize public employees, including our longest serving city employee, Dick Tennant, who served the city for 60 years, as a police officer, sergeant and lieutenant, then court liaison and Mayor’s Court bailiff. And City Manager Matt Greeson for his 15 years of dedicated service to the Worthington community as he takes on a new opportunity as city manager for the city of Kettering. These individuals have demonstrated outstanding dedication to service and have inspired many people to careers in public service or to give back to their communities in other ways. Whether serving decades, years, or just a few months, City employees are a dedicated team that work hard every day to provide excellent City services to the community. Their professionalism and integrity is beyond measure.

Some choose to serve through elected office. The city is led by City Council members who give many hours in service, navigating challenging issues and working to improve the community. These individuals are passionate about Worthington and come together to govern and lead the city.

The city also wishes to recognize members of city boards and commissions who give hours of their time without compensation, often tackling complex issues, to support and advise City Council and staff. Their expertise and knowledge inform decisions on policies, issues and initiatives. Their work is vital to the Worthington community.

The Worthington community has many opportunities for people to get involved. Recent graduates of Worthington’s Citizens Academy spent seven weeks going behind the scenes of the city government and wrapped up their experience exploring ways to volunteer or serve their community in other ways. They learned about opportunities to serve on boards or commissions, with our parks and recreation events, or with any number of our community partners. We are grateful for their continued interest and support and know that they will go on to make a difference in important ways in our community.

We thank everyone who has taken time to help others and said “yes” to volunteering and serving the Worthington community. We appreciate your dedication. Our community would not be what it is today without you. Thank you.

Robyn Stewart is Worthington's assistant city manager.

This article originally appeared on ThisWeek: Worthy Point of View: Volunteers deserve gratitude for serving community