Bullard Superintendent Keith Bryant said no one should deceive another — especially not a pastor.
School administrators, family, friends, colleagues and church members all kept a secret from the Rev. Scott Brown, with First Baptist Church of Bullard — that he was going to be honored by the school district for his impact on its students.
Brown was one of five honorees inducted into the school district’s wall of honor, which recognizes people who have made a positive difference with the youth. In its fifth year, the wall outside the Audrey B. Owens Auditorium has almost 50 names.
Community members nominate people to a committee that selects the annual honorees. When Brown’s name came up, he already had volunteered to be the speaker at the event, and administrators decided to surprise him. His name was not printed on the program, and his plaque was added to the wall after the ceremony began.
“School districts try to teach honesty, but today we have succeeded in deception because many of you know we have one more honoree,” Bryant said in the ceremony in the auditorium Sunday afternoon.
Brown is a member of the Bullard Ministerial Alliance and serves as director at the Super Summer Camps with the Baptist General Convention of Texas. He serves in youth ministry. He is one of the voices for Panther Radio and helps with athletic events and announces for the Bullard Belles, Bryant said.
He also has been awarded the Cecil Harper Humanitarian Award and the Man of the Year award from the Bullard Chamber of Commerce.
“Many lives have been forever changed by your character, your integrity, your passion and your love go people,” Bryant said. “Our lives are enriched by your daily example of servitude. Welcome to our Wall of Honor and forgive us for being somewhat deceitful.”
The late Norene Shaffer began teaching at Bullard Elementary No. 2 in 1966, before the school’s integration. In 1970, she started the first kindergarten class at Bullard Independent School District. She was an Army wife in World War II, and traveled to several countries overseas with her husband. The couple had five children, four of which graduated from Bullard.
“She taught her students to like each other and to like school, then education fell into place …” Brown said at the ceremony. “She taught the pillars of character — respect, responsibility, honesty, trustworthiness, teamwork, caring, fairness and citizenship — long before character education was adopted as required instruction in public schools.”
Mrs. Shaffer won several professional educator awards, and her life was marked with dedication to church and volunteerism.
While living in Alabama, she organized and supervised a staff of 350 volunteers to set a world record of 1,983 pints of blood taken in one day, Brown said.
“Norene had a love for God, her family, the church and all children, and she dedicated her life to these things,” Brown said.
MARK AND LISA MAPLES
Mark and Lisa Maples both graduated from Jacksonville High School in 1980 and have been married for 29 years, Brown said. The pair has two children together, and after a long career, moved to Bullard 13 years ago.
Mrs. Maples dedicated many years to teaching, mentoring raising funds and serving on committees, Brown said.
“Mark and Lisa Maples’ life goal is to honor Christ,” Brown said. They both acknowledge that any success they’ve had in any organization is due to others’ influence and assistance as they have attempted to help kids in Bullard.”
Between the two, they have been involved with youth groups, Sunday schools, Disciple Now, band boosters, Fellowship of Christian Athletes, the Bullard Kiwanis Club, Key Club, Woodmen of the World, Boy Scouts of America and See you at The Pole.
Mark Maples also is the recipient of a list of awards including the Cecil Harper Humanitarian Award.
Jan Berry spent her entire teaching career — 37 years — at Bullard ISD.
She served as the Model United Nations sponsor and coached the tennis team for 21 years. Mrs. Berry was a longtime teacher of social studies, government and economics. She encouraged her students to get registered to vote once they turned 18, Brown said. She also celebrated her acceptance into college with certificates of recognition.
“Her classroom was decorated with campaign memorabilia and framed photographs of Bullard students who served out country in the United States military,” Brown said.