Ellen Martin received a standing ovation as she made her way to the stage, fighting back tears. Martin was the recipient of the Community Spirit Award. Austin Nelson | Outlook Photo
Ellen Martin received a standing ovation as she made her way to the stage, fighting back tears. Martin was the recipient of the Community Spirit Award. Austin Nelson | Outlook Photo

Archived Story

Ellen Martin receives Community Spirit Award

Published 8:16pm Wednesday, March 5, 2014

As Ellen Martin heard her name announced at last Friday’s Chamber of Commerce Annual Banquet, her mouth stood agape.

Martin was named as the 2014 recipient of the Community Spirit Award.

“There have been very few times in my life when I have been speechless, but Friday was one of those days,” Martin said. “I kept listening and thinking ‘oh, that must be so and so,’ but it wasn’t until they got to the After the Bell program that my eyes closed and my mouth opened.”

Martin is the director of support services for the Alexander City Board of Education. She moved to Kellyton with her family at age 3, and began school in the school the system she would one day work for.

“I am a product of the Alexander City School System,” Martin said. “I was a student at Jim Pearson the first year it was opened.”

Martin returned to Jim Pearson some years later, getting her first teaching job there, eventually climbing the ranks to assistant principal and then principal.

“I was talking to Nancy Ammons, and when the committee (that decides on this award) met, two of the committee members said I was one of the main reasons they came to Alexander City. I sold them on it while I was still at Jim Pearson. You have to live and love a place, and I do.”

Martin has served on a variety of boards and is a member of many different organizations.  She has served on the Lake Martin Area United Way Board of Directors, and president of the group’s executive board. She has served as a member of the Alexander City Education Foundation, an Alexander City Chamber of Commerce Board Member and is an active member of Beta Sigma Phi Sorority – just to name a few.

This very spirit of giving back that Martin embodies is the thing she enjoys most about Alexander City.

“What makes our community great are its citizens, who give up their time and energy to go above and beyond,” Martin said. “We have so many caring people. There is no cash reward for these volunteers – it is all paid in that good feeling you get in your heart.”

 

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