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Sally Ann Cerny

November 12, 1945 March 4, 2021
Sally Ann Cerny
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Obituary for Sally Ann Cerny

Sally (Cogan) Cerny passed peacefully on March 4, 2021, after a long battle with Alzheimer's. Sally was born on November 12, 1945, to John and Frances (Landd) Cogan of Davenport, Iowa. Sally is survived by her husband of 52 years, Charles Cerny; brother, John (Lynn) Cogan of Atlanta, GA; sister, Kitty (Kris) Knaphus of Cascade; and many nieces and nephews.

Sally received a Bachelor’s Degree in English from Marycrest College in Davenport, Iowa; a Master’s Degree from Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wisconsin; and Master’s in Business Administration from the University of Montana. Sally's first position was teaching English at a Christian College in Columbia, Missouri. There, she took part in the ambitious conversion of Christian College, a two year women's college, to Columbia College, a four year, coeducational institution of learning. Of Sally's Columbia College experience two qualities stand out, an ability to connect with people regardless of differences in perspective and an ability to face challenges squarely and without hesitation. Sally's next position was as a special education teacher with the Illinois Department of Health and Human Services. In 1974, Chuck and Sally moved to Great Falls, and Sally accepted a position as special education teacher with Easter Seals. At Easter Seals, Sally rose steadily to positions including program director, adult training director, vice president for vocational and Goodwill Services, executive vice president and CEO, and finally President and CEO of Northern Rocky Mountain Easter Seal and Goodwill Industries.

Sally was recognized nationally for her business acumen and innovative management style. She was admired for the programs at Easter Seal/Goodwill that she had built and the quality services that she provided to those entrusted to her care, but most of all she was just plain loved by all who knew her.

Her hobbies included skiing, golf, reading, and textile weaving. She and Chuck, with family and friends, built a log cabin in the Little Belts, Sally wielding a 20 oz. claw hammer to drive large spikes.

Chuck and Sally were animal lovers and were highly involved with Golden Retriever Rescue and the Maclean Animal Shelter.

In lieu of flowers, donations to Easter Seal / Goodwill or to the Maclean Animal Shelter are suggested.

To plant a tree in memory of Sally Ann Cerny, visit the Tribute Store.


Event Information

Cremation has taken place.

Memorial Contribution

Easter Seals

PO Box 2509
Great Falls, Montana 59403

Maclean Animal Adoption Center


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