Daily Archives: April 29, 2008

Garland wins award

RedFork Main Street Vice President Phil Garland, principal of Webster High School, has won the 2008 MetLife Foundation Ambassadors In Education Award.

The national award honors Garland with a crystal apple and a $5,000 grant for his school.

According to a media release, “the national award program recognizes the most collaborative public school principals in 25 cities, including Tulsa.”

All middle- and high-school principals in the Tulsa Public School District were eligible for the award. Several of Garland’s colleagues and community members nominated him for the award last month.

“Mr. Garland has transformed our school and the community surrounding it,” Gary Percefull, president of the Tulsa Board of Education, said in a media release. “Mr. Garland has helped sustain a collaborative effort with Webster and the six feeder schools that it serves. His outreach efforts also include the neighborhood and business community. He exemplifies the characteristics of a leader in the school and within the community.”

According to the news release, the program honors exemplary school principals who build partnerships with community organizations, parents, and guardians; resolve conflicts and promote safety in the school and community; or promote civic engagement and community service.

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Saying goodbye

Mark Griffith, 49, owner of Mark Griffith Memorial Funeral Homes, passed away Saturday.

His family told the Tulsa World that he got a start on his career as a child, when he traveled to funerals with his father, Gene, also a funeral director. He became owner of Mark Griffith Memorial Funeral Homes Inc. in 1992, taking over the business from his father, the World reports.

He was a past president of the Ford Model T Club of Tulsa and owned two Model T cars, which he used to carry the grand marshals for Webster High School homecoming parades, the Tulsa World reports.

Mark was involved in many Red Fork organizations, including the Red Fork Brookside Masonic Lodge No. 505, Red Fork Eastern Star Chapter No. 394, Southwest Tulsa Chamber of Commerce, Westside YMCA, and Townwest Sertoma. He also attended Trinity Baptist Church and was a member of the Oklahoma Funeral Directors Association and a lifetime member of the Professional Car Society, Akdar Shriners and Akdar Car Buffs.

He is survived by his parents, Charlsie and Gene Griffith; sons, Geoffrey, Michael and John Mark Griffith; daughter, Laura Griffith; sister, Pamela Samples; fiancee, Verona Felkner; and two grandchildren.

Memorial contributions can be made to The Gideons International, P.O. Box 9294, Tulsa OK 74157. A memorial service will be held at 2 p.m. Thursday, May 1, at Trinity Baptist Church, with interment at Woodland Memorial Park.

Click here to sign Mark’s online guestbook.