Father and son Bob and Derek Turner together won the Edmond Area Chamber of Commerce 2009 Citizen of the Year Award. W. Roger Webb, president of the University of Central Oklahoma and 2008 Citizen of the Year, presented the award at the chamber’s Annual Awards Banquet on Friday at the UCO Nigh University Center Ballroom.
The Turners have been visionaries for Edmond, Webb said, by helping the community to become a corporate hub and improving the quality of life for those less fortunate. “That long-term commitment to community has been a family affair,” Webb said Friday night.
While Turner & Company previously has won the Small Business of the Year Award, Webb said, “their commitment goes far beyond business.” The family, he said, has supported organizations such as Project Read, Edmond Educational Endowment Fund and Junior Achievement.
A recent family endeavor, Turning Point Ministries, provides a bridge between Habitat for Humanity and the community, Webb said. This ministry has been instrumental in the development of Legacy Station, a 12-home community located between the downtown post office and the railroad.
Derek Turner, who played football at Deer Creek High School and Baylor University, “has had a remarkable athletic career,” Webb said. Webb praised him for using the skills and lessons he learned as a scholar-athlete to volunteer, mentor and coach the young men participating in the football program at Oklahoma Christian School.
Turner family members and Oklahoma Christian School football team members started appearing through the back doors of the ballroom as the two men came to the podium to accept the award.
“This is a real honor for me, primarily because I get to be honored with my dad. He’s taught me a tremendous amount about leadership and giving back to the community,” Derek Turner said. He praised his father for his involvement with Francis Tuttle Technology Center when it was still just an empty field. Bob Turner has served on the Francis Tuttle Board of Education since its inception.
As a volunteer football coach at Oklahoma Christian School, Derek Turner said he leaves work at 3 p.m. in the fall and is away from home evenings and Saturdays for practices, games and film exchanges. He thanked his coworkers and family, who allow him to live his passion.
“I’m lucky. It’s a passion I have. I think that God gave me the ability to have a job that I could do this with these kids,” said Derek Turner. “I wouldn’t have it any other way. I get more out of them, more from them than they’ll ever know.”
Bob Turner said he and his wife Martha moved to Edmond in 1967. “We’ve been going to football games for a lot of years with this guy and others.
“We’re grateful for this community and we’re grateful for all of you here and we’re going to keep it going. It’s a great place to live.”
Turner & Company specializes in land development, construction and property management in Edmond and Oklahoma City. Derek Turner, who purchased the family owned firm in 1996, serves as its president. Bob Turner is the founder and past president, and now serves as a consultant to the Land Development Department.
Other awards announced at the Edmond Area Chamber of Commerce Annual Awards Banquet include:
Mercy Health Ambassador of the Year: Harry Kocurek of the Catholic Church of St. John the Baptist.
Volunteer of the Year: Kelly VanOsdol of Framin’ Gallery.
Chairman’s Award: Ray Hibbard of Edmond Life & Leisure.
Tayo Fichtl Young Professional Award: Josh Moore of Turner & Company
Bank of Oklahoma Small Business of the Year Award: Powers at Law.
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