Kim Gokce
Kim Gokce

Kim Gokce may be known best for his volunteer work for Cross Keys High School and as a member of the Governor’s Commission drawing up plans for the city of Brookhaven, but now he can add a new honor to his resume: a 2012 Volunteer of the Year for the YMCA of metro Atlanta.

Gokce, who lives in Brookhaven, was among 22 people the Y named Volunteers of the Year on Nov. 12. Gokce was honored for his contributions to the Cowart Family/Ashford Dunwoody YMCA in Brookhaven.

Lisa Aman

Other Y volunteers honored included Charles Yates Jr. of Atlanta, who received the Y’s highest volunteer honor, the 2012 Bransby Christian Leadership Award; Lisa Aman of Sandy Springs, named Volunteer of the Year for the Carl. E. Sanders Family Y in Buckhead; and Richard Gerakitis of Buckhead, named Volunteer of the Year for the YMCA of metro Atlanta.

Gokce began volunteer work with the Y as a soccer coach. He helped the Y branch in Dunwoody work out an agreement to use fields at Cross Keys High for programs and activities that allow the Y to reach underserved communities, the organization said.

Charlie Yates

“Kim is a true cause-driven leader,” Julie Koriakan, executive director of the Cowart Family Y, said in a press release. “He has such a passion for the Y’s work in the community, and his dedication has allowed for many local children to participate in supervised, constructive after-school activities. Reaching out to underserved youth is one of his greatest goals.”

Gokce also serves as chairman of the Cross Keys Foundation, which raises money to support schools in the Cross Keys cluster, and represents District 4 on the Governor’s Commission on Brookhaven, which is now helping organize the fledgling city.

Richard Gerakitis

“I get a renewal of faith in humanity and hope for the future while volunteering with the Y,” Gokce said. “The Y opens the community’s eyes to the true assets, achievements and aspirations of our young people. Reconnecting them to a community is priceless.”

Joe Earle

Joe Earle is Editor-at-Large. He has more than 30-years of experience with daily newspapers, including the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and was Managing Editor of Reporter Newspapers.