Winkler recipient of inaugural KY Boys and Girls Club CEO of the Year award

February 28, 2024 | 12:14 am

Updated February 28, 2024 | 12:16 am

Steve Winkler

Steve Winkler is the first recipient of the Kentucky Boys and Girls Club CEO of the Year, but he’ll tell you it wasn’t a solo recognition.

“It’s a good team effort, and I think it’s a real strategic effort from our board and our staff to carry out this strategic plan over the last 4 or 5 years,” Winkler said.

Winker noted the group followed the regional headquarters’ strategic plan, and it was up to the local boards to decide how to operate within that plan. Since its implementation in 2019, the state has recognized the local Cliff Hagan Boys and Girls Club, where Winkler is the CEO, for success in several areas.

The Commonwealth listed the following successes from Cliff Hagan under Winkler’s leadership:

  • Program services
  • Club marketing
  • Expansions of service areas in Henderson County, Ohio County, and Butler County
  • Club safety
  • Capital projects including the new Henderson Club location in October 2023, the new Teen Center and new Extension in Butler County, and the demolition and new Club structure coming in Ohio County

After a successful year, Winkler said the organization is doing a good job bringing programs and getting the community to support and buy into the mission of Boys and Girls clubs.

He said the same thing is happening throughout the Commonwealth.

“I think people are realizing what clubs are about now. We’re not babysitting services or basketball programs. It’s about being responsible citizens through workforce development, growing up to hold down jobs in your communities, and ensuring that you get teens into the club and teach them what they need, like respect and discipline,” Winkler said.

With community support, Winkler said the clubs can make a bigger impact in children’s lives.

In addition to being named CEO of the Year, Winkler also joins the MidWest Region level as the Kentucky Ambassador. The board is made of ambassadors from 14 other states in the MidWest region as they compile a new strategic plan for the region.

Winkler wants to address teen recruitment and trauma-informed care, as well as organize science-based programs and life and workforce readiness.

He said some goals will be met by October, but they will conduct surveys before deciding on specific actions to take.

“We’re going to do an evaluation piece of all the clubs and then try to help them reach their goal and/or at least put a plan in place over the next year or two,” Winkler said.

Cliff Hagan Boys and Girls Club manages locations in four counties, including Butler, Daviess, Henderson, and Ohio.

February 28, 2024 | 12:14 am

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