Johnson County Senior Center Director Kathy Motsinger, left, is joined by her daughter Kandas, after receiving the 2022 Mac Wright Citizen of the Year for her years of hard work and service to the community Photo submitted
By Meg Dickens
Each year, the Johnson County Chamber of Commerce holds an award ceremony and dinner to honor local people and businesses that have gone above and beyond for this community. People gather to eat a locally catered meal and show their respect. On Friday, June 3, at the First Christian Church Life Center, officials declared Johnson County Senior Center Director Katherine Motsinger-Eller the 2022 Mac Wright Citizen of the Year for her years of hard work and service to the community.
Pubic support of Motsinger-Eller exploded at the news. The director has immense popularity, and several locals report they “have never heard a bad word” said about her. When her children posted the news online via social media, over 200 people reached out to state their congratulations and approval. Locals expressed sentiments such as “if anyone ever deserved this award, it would be Kathy,” “she is a blessing to everyone,” and “the world would be a better place if we all had a heart like Kathy.”
“There is no one more deserving,” daughter Kandas Motsinger gushed after the announcement. “She is one of the most selfless people I’ve ever known. Her love and care is overwhelming. I am so proud to call her my mother!”
Motsinger-Eller has helped people of all ages during her time in the workforce. Before taking her current position, she spent 25 years helping local youth through the Johnson County School System. Motsinger-Eller still uses connections made during those days to continue helping those in need.
One example of this is the Chicks with Sticks group project providing free, handmade hats for local children to keep them warm during the winter months.
Motsinger-Eller has spent the last five years transforming the local senior center into a place where everyone can feel at home. Although originally new to working with seniors, she traveled around studying how facilities in the region worked and learned how to improve local programming.
She continues to strive for growth and improvements, such as the upcoming center expansion set to take place later this year. In her time as director, membership numbers have jumped from the mid-300s to close to 1,800, and government officials both locally and at the state level have bragged on the facility. The center is a nonprofit organization with free membership to seniors age 60 and older.
Learn more about the Senior Center at johnsoncountyseniorcenter.com.