COMMUNITY: Howard Kohn gets what’s coming to him

PHOTO: Diana and Howard Kohn and Deborah Huffman, city Recreation Department deputy director, who nominated Howard.

It’s not surprising that Takoma Park resident Howard Kohn was named one of the 2015 Community Volunteers of the Year by Maryland’s Recreation and Parks department.  What’s surprising is that he doesn’t get the award every year.

Kohn has been volunteering since he moved to Takoma Park more than three decades ago. That’s when he helped found many of Takoma Park’s highly popular youth sports leagues. He’s had a role in founding youth soccer, baseball, softball, winter basketball, and adult basketball. He was also a soccer coach for Blair high school.

Kohn keeps his hand in. He’s still a soccer commissioner and baseball fields coordinator. He volunteers for civic and social service groups as well. He volunteers for the Takoma Park Recreation Department, the city’s Independence Day Committee, the Takoma Foundation, Community Health and Empowerment through Education and Research (CHEER), the city’s Martin Luther King Service Day, the Celebrate Takoma festival, Takoma United for an Engaged Community, the Ready-by-21 Youth Collaborative, the Takoma Park Commemorative Commission, and more.

That’s not all. Kohn chaired the Takoma Park Recreation Committee, co-chaired the Takoma Junction Task Force, and helped revive the Takoma Foundation. He organized for the new Blair High School and served as an officer of the Parent Teachers and Student Association there.

Kohn also contributed his considerable professional skills as an editor and writer to this publication. This included writing his widely read Talk of Takoma column for about ten years.

Kohn and two other recipients, Bill Walmsley and Jon Korin, were presented with their Community Volunteer of the Year awards on April 16 in Ocean Beach, Md., during National Volunteer Week.

Thanks to Virgina Meyers and the Takoma Park Newsletter for providing information for this article.