Rotary's Professional Citizen Is Katie Wright, Known For Community Foundation
Park City Rotary on Tuesday presented its annual Professional Citizen of the Year award to Katie Wright, former executive director of the Park City Community Foundation.
Katie Wright received this year’s Professional Citizen Award, named for the late Linda Singer Berrett (a local educator and Park City Rotary’s first female president), at a gathering in Rotary Park.
Wright has worked in local non-profits for over 13 years and recently retired after six years as the head of the Community Foundation.
Rotarian Bob Richer noted that, among other initiatives, she laid the foundations for an emergency relief fund for the community.
“Perhaps someday we would have to deal with a fire, or earthquakes, etc. Well, of course no one, even Katie, could have anticipated COVID. But when it came, we as a community were prepared, thanks to Katie. In a relatively short period of time, through the Foundation’s Community Response Fund, we raised well over $3 million, which has been used to relieve the pain and suffering through food assistance, housing assistance and health care, of many in our community. Great job, Park City! Great job, Community Foundation! And great job, Katie Wright!”
Wright was also honored by current Community Foundation Board Chair, Kristi Cumming, and Park City Mayor Andy Beerman.
The audience also heard from Diego Zegarra, Vice President of Equity and Impact for the Foundation. He said Wright was an example of a professional relationship that made you better.
“As an immigrant myself, as a person of color, breaking into the philanthropic space, it wasn’t always easy. Katie allowed me to do it with grace, and by sharing all of her expertise. She lifted me up and opened doors for me that I would have never imagined. I remember when she actively changed the culture at the Community Foundation to encourage us to have difficult conversations about race equity, creating a more open and transparent space for people to share. On a week that’s been challenging for the world and our community, boy do we miss that calming vulnerable energy that Katie brought.”
Accepting the award, Wright said that, like Rotary members, she believes that to be of service is the only way to be.
“These days, as Andy said, it’s kinda easy to feel really down and out, with the pandemic and terrible air that you can’t even exercise outside in, and sometimes the community dialogue that is more snarky than substance. But I really like Randy Barton and his rose-colored glasses. And I feel like that’s sort of how I walk through the world. Because when you’re working on these issues with people who really care, who are giving their time, their money, their experience, you can really see that the world is quite beautiful and people are quite lovely. And so I feel very lucky and positive and optimistic.”
Katie Wright, Park City Rotary’s Professional Citizen of the Year for 2021.