One Of The "Best" Leaves Her Job - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

02/29/04

One Of The "Best" Leaves Her Job

Kathy Best has been called, by many people, the "motivation" behind helping all children in Jackson County. So Youth Court Judge Sharon Sigalas was more than a little surprised when she heard of Best's resignation.

"I was just shocked," Sigalas said. "I was floored."

Sigalas remembers just seven years ago when Best started the Jackson County Children's Service Coalition.

"They started off just doing little things, but as you and everybody in Jackson County knows, the coalition has grown to be a major force in youth, youth activities, and resources for troubled youth and youth who aren't in trouble," Sigalas said.

Best has organized events and fund raisers to help every child in Jackson County. One of the annual events Best started, called Kid's Time, drew a family crowd of more than 5,000 people this year.

Best also helped raise the money for the expansion to the Rhona H. Crane Memorial Youth Shelter and is currently raising money for a new ropes course for teens.

"Kathy just picked up the ball and went," Sigalas said.

"I think there's somebody that comes in and starts and agency and gets the ball rolling and gets people on board. And then I think there comes a time where it's just like a race," said Best. "You hand off the baton to the middle person. And I think that's where this agency is."

Best says she'll continue helping youth in Jackson County, just in a different way. Her church is opening a Christian after-school program that she'll be spearheading only three doors down from her current office. Kathy Best's last day is April 29th.

by Claire Nelson

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