By James Beaty
Pride In McAlester has recently won two awards from Oklahoma organizations. During Keep Oklahoma Beautiful’s Environmental Excellence Awards on November 1, PIM received the Devon Achievement Award for their Great American Cleanup™ in Oklahoma efforts. During the months of March, April and May, Pride In McAlester conducted an education campaign, seven days of cleanup activities and beautification projects. The events included partnerships with McAlester Public Schools, the City of McAlester, Pittsburg County Sheriff’s Department and several civic organizations. PIM was chosen for this award from more than 300 Great American Cleanup™ in Oklahoma projects across the state. Glen Kerns, retired City of McAlester city parks superintendent was recognized as an Affiliate Champion for his passion, professionalism and dedication that led to the planting of 3,000 trees, creation of the McAlester Arboretum and the designation of McAlester as a Tree City USA. The City of McAlester and McAlester Public Schools were also category finalists. Pictured back row from left are, Beverly Wooden, PIM project assistant; Cara Dorrell, PIM board of directors’ secretary; Ernie Russell and Brenda Russell, PIM volunteers; Carol Bishop, PIM board of directors’ treasurer; Sherrol Ledbetter, PIM volunteer; Debbie Watkins, McAlester Public Schools chief information officer; McAlester Mayor Steve Harrison and wife, Patty Harrison; and front row, Donna Parson, PIM volunteer; Michael Giacomo, PIM volunteer; Stephanie Giacomo, PIM Eexecutive director; PIM board of directors’ president, Justin Few and wife, Lori Few.