By Neal Broadus
Lord’s Gym Chairman
In 2007 a group of local citizens came together in order to research the feasibility of opening a community activity center in Jackson County. The center would offer various activities and programs for the community and its youth.
After several community wide meetings, which were co-sponsored by the Vision 20/20 Community Action Group and the Perfect Vision/UNITE Anti-drug Coalition, the group decided to take a trip to McCreary County in order to investigate a community center that had already been in operation for several years there. It was called the Lord’s Gym of McCreary County, and it was founded by Rev. Braxton King.
After the group’s visit, it was decided that Jackson County should also be able to accomplish what McCreary County had with their Lord’s Gym. So, with that visit the Lord’s Gym of McCreary County became the model and inspiration for the future Lord’s Gym of Jackson County Community Activity Center. It was almost two years after that initial visit before the Lord’s Gym of Jackson County was able to officially open on Friday, April 17, 2009, with the help of several community organizations, churches and individuals.
On April 17, 2011, the Lord’s Gym will have been open for a total of two years. With that in mind, the Lord’s Gym Board of Directors recently took time to honor some of their former board members. They are as follows: Tammy Spurlock, Malta Flannery, and Sheriff Denny Peyman.
Tammy Spurlock, General Manager for the Jackson County Sun, was the original secretary for the Lord’s Gym when members of the community first came together to begin work on trying to open a community activity center. She served in the position of secretary throughout 2008.
Malta Flannery, who is the Assistant Director for the Jackson County Public Library, took over as secretary for the Lord’s Gym after Tammy Spurlock. She served in this position for two years, throughout 2009 and 2010. Kimberly Collett, who works for the local Department of Community Based Services Office of Protection & Permanency, has willingly stepped forward to fill the position as the current secretary for the Lord’s Gym.
Denny Peyman, who was the Youth Chaplain for Jackson County Ministries, served as the first full-time Program Director for the Lord’s Gym. He served in this position for two years (2009 & 2010), until he was elected as Sheriff of Jackson County in November of 2010. Currently his position is being filled by Rev. Everett VanZant, pastor of Gray Hawk Baptist Church, who is the Assistant Program Director for the Lord’s Gym, and Col. Neal Broadus, Jackson County Public Schools’ Title 1 Parent Involvement Coordinator, who is the Chairman for the Lord’s Gym Board of Directors, and also one of the founders of the organization.
The Lord’s Gym is currently in the process of trying to find somebody that is willing to volunteer their time and service to become the Program Director for the Lord’s Gym. If you think that you might be interested in filling this position then, please call Neal Broadus at 364-2218 (home) or 287-7181 (work).
The Lord’s Gym Board of Directors would like to take this time to thank each one of these individuals for the very important roles they played in helping to found the Lord’s Gym of Jackson County. Without men and women like them, who are willing to serve the Lord by serving their community, the Lord’s Gym would have never been anything more than just a dream. When so many said that it couldn’t be done; you had the faith to follow God’s lead. We thank you for that faith.
For information on how you can help support the Lord’s Gym, please call Neal Broadus at 364-2218 (home) or 287-LORD/5673 (Lord’s Gym). If you wish to help support the Lord’s Gym financially, then you may mail donations to the following address: Lord’s Gym of Jackson County, P.O. Box 1168, McKee, KY 40447. The Lord’s Gym can now also be found on Facebook. Please check us out. We would love to have you listed as a friend.