Diana Pfaff

IRVING, Texas (April 2009) - The City of Irving recently honored Martha McMurry and Ted Olson with the High Spirited Citizen award. Both 30-year residents of the city, McMurry and Olson were recognized by Irving Mayor Herbert Gears at separate meetings of the Irving City Council for decades of community leadership and volunteer service.

McMurry has been an active participant in a variety of organizations throughout Irving, including the Irving Symphony League, serving as chair of the organization's ball in 1987 and president from 1989 to 1990. McMurry is also a member of the Las Colinas Women's Association, Lyric Stage League, Women of Rotary, Irving's Junior Book Club, and is currently serving her second term as president of the Irving Women's Club.

"Martha is a quite worker who loves working with people. She has been an excellent volunteer in the Irving community," states Judy Anderson with the Greater Irving Las Colinas Chamber of Commerce, who nominated McMurry for the award.

McMurry has been honored as a Lifetime Member of the Irving Symphony League and the Irving Heritage Society.

Since retiring as president of the Promotional Products Association International, Olson has devoted most of his time to volunteering. He has taken his business knowledge and connections within the community to help sell advertising specialties to charitable organizations, donating commissions back to groups. Olson serves on multiple boards, including the Irving Rotary Club, Irving's Salvation Army Advisory Council, Greater Irving Las Colinas Chamber of Commerce's Sister Cities Board and the Irving Museum Board. He is the current chairman of the DFW Humane Society, and served as on the Irving Convention and Visitors Bureau Board for six years, including a year as chairman.

During his 62 years as a Boy Scout, Olson earned his Eagle Scout rank, a designation that only 5% of all who join a Boy Scout troop achieve, as well as the Distinguished Eagle award, the Spurgeon award, the Silver Beaver and Scouting's highest honor, the Silver Buffalo. He served three terms as World Vice Chairman of the International Fellowship of Scouting Rotarians, and is a Baden Powell Foundation member.

"Ted's life is truly a testament to the Scouting virtues of service and leadership," said Joe Stratton, Olson's friend who nominated him for the award.

The High Spirited Citizen program was initiated in 1988 by the Irving Convention and Visitors Bureau. Its purpose is to encourage the spirit of volunteerism. To date, more than 400 of Irving's "unsung" heroes have been honored with the award. To nominate an Irving resident, contact Jane Kilburn at 972-252-7476 or download an application form at www.irvingtexas.com/media/high-spirited-citizens/