Since the week he moved to Longboat Key, Christopher Sachs has been dedicated to the mission of the Kiwanis Club. Now, it's time to take his passion to the next level by stepping into the role of president.
Sachs grew up in New England, coming down with his family to Longboat Key as snowbirds throughout his childhood. He worked in the publishing business for several well-known magazines, including Men's Journal as the ad director and National Geographic Adventure as the founding publisher.
Sachs moved to Longboat Key full-time in 2017 and joined the Kiwanis Club in that same year. His term as Kiwanis Club president will start at the next bi-monthly brunch.
The Observer sat down with Sachs to discover his love for the mission of Kiwanis Club and his goals for the future.
How did you get involved in the Kiwanis Club?
I was somewhat affiliated with Kiwanis back in Connecticut, but back then it was really more of like a networking thing for young business professionals. When we moved here, they kind of ushered us into it rather quickly. My wife met Lynn Larson, who became the president of Kiwanis the following year. She and my wife met in a hair salon the first week we came down here. We quickly found that it was just a really wonderful collection of like-minded individuals that just want to do good things and stay involved.
What has your involvement looked like?
I've been the captain of the Kiwanis/Salvation Army annual bell ringing. That's at Publix every year. It starts the first Friday after Thanksgiving. That's been a very successful event for us. In fact, I've been told by the Salvation Army that the Longboat Key Publix location raises more individual donations than any other location in Manatee and Sarasota County.
What does the Kiwanis Club mean to you?
It really starts with kind of the charitable aspect of wanting to make someone else's life better. It speaks to people who are educated, involved, curious and kind people that truly want to make a difference. It makes it different than a typical social club of some sort. We're always talking about what can we do next and what can we do better. It's that sum of caring individuals, especially the stage in their life where they're looking more in terms of giving back as opposed to where they're going.
It's a wonderful DNA that holds strong people together, rather than being the development and networking of business careers. It really is a sense of giving back charitable and philanthropic operations and people still getting involved.
What is your favorite part about the Kiwanis Club?
The camaraderie and fellowship and just the wonderful individuals that are all drawn to this mission-based club. It's the people that make it what it is. We are a small and very dynamic group. We call ourselves small and mighty in service to the the Kiwanis motto of just really doing the most good for children.
What are your goals as president?
I'm just trying to maintain the club just like Michael Garey and the previous presidents. I am looking forward to really putting the pandemic behind us and helping people come out and reach out through their involvement and just participation or just life in general.
My primary goal is to carry on and carry forward the impact that we've had in the community, especially with children, the difference that Kiwanis has made and just carrying that tradition forward, and perhaps hopefully expanding members along the way.
Petra Rivera is the Longboat community reporter. She holds a bachelor’s degree of journalism with an emphasis on reporting and writing from the University of Missouri. Previously, she was a food and drink writer for Vox magazine as well as a reporter for the Columbia Missourian.