LIMA — Sally Windle, one of this year’s Allen County Jefferson Award winners, was a bit surprised when she found out she was being honored.
“I didn’t think it was about me. I thought it was someone else that I had helped with the nomination because I didn’t honestly think they were talking about me. I just don’t think in those terms,” Windle said.
Windle has been involved in education and the arts for more than 30 years. She’s now the executive director of ArtSpace/Lima, an unpaid volunteer position.
“Sally’s commitment to ArtSpace/Lima has been unprecedented,” said Norma Penn, Windle’s nominator. “She spent many years on the board, and then when it needed new leadership, she was there. Sally has turned the organization around. There are events happening there all the time.”
Before becoming executive director of ArtSpace/Lima, Windle worked for Lima City Schools.
“Whenever people talk about retiring, they say, ‘Well, then I’ll go to my fun job.’ It might be awkward to think, ‘Well, it’s just volunteer,’ but it’s the fun part of being able to do what you want to do, and this is volunteering at its best,” Windle noted.
Windle continues her love for education by serving on the Lima school board.
“I just have this bit of responsibility to make sure that the students are in the best environment they can be, and that’s a tremendous honor also because the leadership of the schools is really important — especially now, with so much going on in politics and government. You have to really be careful because people still need good educators, and with school and politics being separate and lots of different choices. Everybody wants good teachers for their kids,” Windle said.
Windle has been honored for her efforts to promote the arts.
“In 2013, she was the Arts Advocacy Collaborative of West Central Ohio recipient of the Advocate of the Year award. She is a founding member of the collaborative, a testament of her ability to bring many entities together to advocate for the arts in Allen, Auglaize, Hardin and Putnam counties,” Penn noted. “Last year Sally received the Marilyn J. Collmer Award, given to someone who has helped promote the Veterans Memorial Civic Center and the arts in the area.”
Reach Sam Shriver at 567-242-0409.