A long time Muscatine County resident, Kim Seligman has always valued volunteering in her community. “As a family, it is the common thread woven throughout our lives that keeps us connected and allows us to serve others,” she shared.
In 2016, to honor her son who died from Type 1 diabetes, Seligman co-founded the Muscatine Diabetes Project. “Volunteering took on a different meaning and helped me deal with the deep pain both emotionally and spiritually,” she said, adding, “there’s joy in the journey as we walk alongside each other.” Through the Muscatine Diabetes Project, Seligman helps provide diabetes prevention education to elementary school students, run the Diabetes Support Group for adults diagnosed with diabetes, coordinate the Muscatine Diabetes Walk to raise money for research, operate the diabetes supply locker, and provide a variety of healthy eating and physical activity education opportunities for people of all ages.
Outside of her work for the Muscatine Diabetes Project, Seligman leads the Muscatine County Empowering Healthy Behaviors Initiative, which formed in 2018 to help reduce the number of people at risk for diabetes in Muscatine County, a priority of the Community Health Needs Assessment. Seligman also actively participates with the Fruitland Community Lions, a part of Lions Club International. This year, she will serve as the USA/Canada Lions Leadership Forum Strides Walk Host Committee Chairperson and will play an important role in organizing their upcoming diabetes prevention walk scheduled to take place in November.
For her numerous volunteer efforts, the Greater Muscatine Chamber of Commerce and Industry named Seligman 2019 Volunteer of the Year, which they announced this July. “It’s neat to see someone who’s done not just one project but who has contributed a lot to their area of work,” said GMCCI Manager of Events and Special Programs Alicia Bull.
Honored by her recognition, Seligman hopes to encourage others to volunteer for causes or organizations they feel passionate about. “Volunteering gives you the opportunity to pay it back, pay it forward, and also serve others,” she said. “We all have a purpose here on earth and sharing our gifts and talents through volunteering is a priceless gift that you can give to others.”