This week we chat with Cindy Kocher, who was named the Greater Temple Terrace Chamber of Commerce’s 2013 Citizen of the Year. She was noted for her longtime community service and commitment to the chamber of commerce. Kocher is the human resource director at the Northside Mental Health Center and founder of the Northside Mental Health Auxiliary, a nonprofit organization that raises money to support mental health center programs. She also served as president of the chamber of commerce in 2000-01 and has chaired Temple Terrace’s annual Fourth of July Parade and cochaired the Temple Terrace Relay for Life.
Maryrose Owens and Sherrill Tomasino were the other two finalists.
Q: What does it mean to be chosen as Citizen of the Year?
Answer: It is such an honor to be a part of a community that is so close and so connected to each other. I’m very honored to be among two other women who are certainly deserving of this award. So for me it is about continuing the journey, continuing to make a difference not only in this community but around the world.
Q: How does this validate all the work you do for the community?
Answer: I really don’t need validation, because I come from my heart. So just doing the work is enough validation for me, just making a difference. If I can make a difference, that is all that counts.
Q: How do you find the time to be so active in the community?
Answer: I don’t know; I guess I am high energy. That is a very interesting question because I work full-time. I taught swimming for 25 years, and I taught motivational courses around the country all at the same time, plus being on all these committees. I guess it takes someone committed to make a difference in the world. My mission in life has always been to make a difference in the life of one person every day.
Q: What words of advice would you give to others who want to become more involved in community service?
Answer: Go inside your heart and ask yourself what can I do to make a difference that will not only help our community, our family, our friends but the world beyond.
Q: What was the fun fact about yourself that took you over the top for the win?
Answer: I think it’s because I talk like Donald Duck.
— Kenneth Knight