With an estimated 1.3 million volunteers statewide, Volunteer Tennessee set forth under the direction of the governor's office to create an initiative to honor the finest of the state's volunteers annually. This initiative seeks to recognize a volunteer from each county in Tennessee who has displayed tremendous dedication to serving their neighbors and worked to strengthen their community in various areas to meet compelling needs. Volunteers are also honored for being a voice for those in need and promoting the message that volunteering is rewarding and part of what it means to be a Tennessean.
Winchester was selected as the honoree for Dyer County based on many years of outstanding service, volunteerism, and dedication to the county.
Her leadership and time as a volunteer have benefited numerous local organizations, including Tennessee Higher Education Commission, Baptist Memorial Health Care System, Dyer County Chamber of Commerce, University of Tennessee at Martin, Tennessee Rehabilitation Center, Dyersburg State Community College, American Red Cross, YMCA, Kiwanis Club, McIver's Grant Public Library, United Way of Dyer County and United Way of West Tennessee.
In addition to day-to-day volunteer work for each of these organizations, Winchester has served as chairwoman for all listed above. She continues to serve as chairwoman for the building of Dyersburg's new library and several boards, including the Dyer County United Way. She has twice been named Dyersburg/Dyer County Woman of the Year.
"Katie's dedication to make Dyer County a better place to live has made an impact on thousands of lives," said United Way of West Tennessee President and CEO Eddie Lee Herndon, who nominated Winchester for the honor. "Giving back to her community and helping others is what is important to Katie. Dyer County is fortunate to have such a strong advocate for those in need and for making Dyer County a better place to work and live."