Social Eyes by Faye Reeder

Eyes on H-E-B: Community leader known for ‘going the extra mile’ retires

Carolyn Sims
Carolyn Sims Handout

Inscribed on the invitation to Carolyn Sims retirement party was “going the extra mile,” and the more than 200 colleagues, constituents, friends and family that gathered at the send off seemed to agree it was the perfect metaphor for her longtime service to the community.

Sims was the precinct administrator for Tarrant County Precinct 3 for the past eight years after serving in other leadership roles in the area for more than 25 years. Commissioner Gary Fickes praised Sims for a job well done and a career well spent as he shared stories and heaped accolades on Sims at a reception held at the new Northeast Tarrant County Courthouse in Hurst earlier this month.

Close friend Trent Petty, President of Petty & Associates, Inc. — a consulting firm for economic and municipal development — commended Sims for her extraordinary work on more than two dozen separate charitable and civic organizations in Tarrant County, hundreds of special events and her role in making the Northeast Tarrant County JPS clinic come to fruition.

“From her days as a middle school counselor and teachers to wearing out shoes on the floor of the House of Representatives to crafting the policies of MHMR to greeting soldiers at DFW Airport, the one thing you can count on with Carolyn is that she is going to go the extra mile every time,” Petty said.

Sims said she plans to take the entire summer off — “the first in probably 50 years without kids or a job,” she said. “After that I will probably do something come the fall but I’m not sure what that is — I’ll wait and see what comes along.”

Tarrant County Judge Glen Whitley said of Sims, “When you see what her commitment, impact and footprint have been on this part of the county…you see that she made things happen.”

Prior to serving as administrator for Commissioner Fickes, Sims was the Austin Chief of Staff for State Representative Vicki Truitt. Her distinguished career in public service has included being a middle school teacher and counselor, President of the Colleyville Area Chamber of Commerce and Arts Council NE, serving in leadership positions with the Town of Westlake and Northwest ISD Education Foundation among other roles.

Sims said she was particularly proud of helping create the Empowering Seniors event in 2009 and is delighted with the growth of the event aimed to help area senior citizens. Other memorable projects for her were construction oversight of the new courthouse and the multitude of road projects in Northeast Tarrant County over the past several years.

“I’ve learned so much about road and building construction – more than I ever wanted to know – but organizing the ground breakings for these projects and then later seeing the roads and this building become a reality has been so rewarding,” Sims said.

State Sen. Kelly Hancock presented a Senate Resolution in honor of Sims’ retirement and in recognition of her impressive achievements.

On a personal note, Commissioner Fickes thanked Sims for her capable management of Precinct 3 during his extended absence surrounding his liver transplant several years back. “I will owe her for that forever…she really stepped up during that time,” Fickes said.

Citing her heavy involvement with the Northeast Tarrant Transportation Summit, Fickes described her as “the driving force behind it” and lauded the relationships she has built with all levels of government and with the 15 cities and six school districts that Precinct 3 serves.

When asked what she liked most about her role, she said: “Most of all, it would be the camaraderie of all the people I’ve met through the county and all the different areas. It’s really been fun.”

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