Although not a native of Lubbock, Louise Cummins has touched the lives of many in the Hub City.
"When we moved to Lubbock, volunteering seemed to be a good way to get involved in the community," said Cummins, 77.
Upon arriving in 1970, she immediately began looking for ways to get plugged in.
"Church, PTA, the League of Women Voters," Cummins said, listing off a few of the organizations she has been a part of.
"The food bank is getting ready to celebrate its 30th year, I believe. I was on the steering committee when we first talked about the need for a food bank," she said.
Cummins has been active in United Way, Lubbock Area Coalition for Literacy, Early Learning Centers, and Lubbock Community Theatre. She has served as president of the board of the Texas Nonprofit Management Assistance Network and the Texas Association of Volunteer Centers.
"I've always been pretty good at keeping several balls in the air," she said.
In 1990, Cummins founded the Volunteer Center of Lubbock, a non-profit organization aimed to enhance the role of volunteers in the community.
"To encourage youth volunteerism, to encourage family volunteering and days of service... The Volunteer Center plays a very valiant role in our community," she said.
She served as its executive director for 12 years before retiring. Currently it has more than 2400 volunteers registered on its website.
"I've probably been on more than 15 boards, but when you work at the Volunteer Center you touch a lot of lives," she said.
From 2011-2012, she served as a consultant and advisory board chair for the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute, a program now affiliated with the Texas Tech University Alumni Association.
She currently serves as president of the Lubbock Area Foundation Board.
"It makes you feel very good to have been involved with something worthwhile, but it makes you feel even better when it continues to grow and just be a very good institution in the community," Cummins said.
Cummins' awards include the YWCA Women of Excellence, the Lubbock-Avalanche Journal's Jefferson Award, the Marsha Sharp Making a Difference for Women award from Soroptomist International, and Altrusa Woman of the Year.
She was the co-recipient, with her husband, of the Women in Communication George Mahon Award.
Although it has been more than a decade since she has walked the halls as executive director of the Volunteer Center of Lubbock, she will always be an example for the community.
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