Conway Public Schools Foundation will hold its fifth annual Hall of Honor Gala on Tuesday, March 6, at 7 p.m. at the Conway High School cafeteria. The annual gala honors outstanding alumni, faculty, administrators and community leaders who have made significant and lasting contributions to Conway Public Schools.
The 2018 Hall of Honor Inductees are Steve W. “Bo” Conner, Distinguished Alumnus; Margaret Grimes, Distinguished Educator; and Dr. Terry Fiddler, Friend of the District.
Conner, a 1970 graduate of Conway High School, embodies the phrase, “Once a Wampus Cat, Always a Wampus Cat.” During his time in Conway Public Schools, he was a three-year letterman in track and football where he served as Captain. He was president of the Beta Club, vice-president of FCA and a member of the Key Club. He also swam competitively for the Hendrix Aquakids for over ten years.
After earning his degree in accounting at UCA and his CPA license, Conner went to work at Malpica, Shock, working his way up to partner. The company later became Engelkes, Conner and Davis. In 2007, he started his own firm, Conner and Sartain, CPA.
Conner has served the Conway community in various capacities throughout the years, showing his dedication to the community by serving as President or Chairman of the Conway Country Club as well as serving on the Conway Civil Service Commission and the Arkansas Community Foundation of Faulkner County.
In addition, Conner has also served on the boards of Independent Living Services, Simmons Bank, Conway Corporation, Conway Kiwanis Club, Conway Symphony and the UCA Purple Circle Club. He received the Purple Circle Member of the Year award in 2009. And of course, he has been active for years in the Conway Wampus Cat Booster Club as well as serving as a youth league baseball coach for nearly a decade.
Grimes, a life-long Conway resident, received her BSE from UCA. She began her teaching career in Conway Public Schools in the mid-1970s, teaching fifth grade for 15 years at Ellen Smith Elementary. While at Ellen Smith, she was named the 1989 District Teacher of the Year. She then taught Social Studies and Arkansas History at Conway Junior High and Bob Courtway Middle School, where she was again named teacher of the year. After 34 years of service to the district, she retired in 2010.
Filled with a great passion for education and teaching, Grimes continued to further her own education, obtaining a Masters Degree and numerous post-graduate and professional hours. She served on the state-wide committee that created the Arkansas History curriculum used by all state schools and mentored many student teachers in her classroom. She also mentored and advised her fellow teachers, helping them in many ways.
Dr. Fiddler graduated from Conway High School, UCA and the University of Tennessee. After teaching at the dental school in Memphis for a short time, he returned to Conway and practiced dentistry for 43 years before retiring in 2016. He was instrumental in getting dentists into the schools to give students free dental checkups and served as chairman of the Arkansas Children’s Hospital Mobile Dental Committee. He is also involved in numerous civic groups in Conway.
A member of the Conway School District Board of Education for twenty-two years, Dr. Fiddler served as president for fifteen years of those years. Every year, he visited every school in the district to personally let teachers and staff know that he cared about them. He was also at most Wampus Cat sporting events, band concerts and theatre productions, supporting students in their various activities. He continues to be a strong advocate of Conway Public Schools.
In announcing the event, CPSF President Aaron Knight said, “The Hall of Honor Gala has secured its place as a signature event in Conway, and it is a wonderful evening for the Foundation as we get to recognize our outstanding recipients.”
Conway Public Schools Foundation is a non-profit foundation created to enhance and support the educational mission of the Conway Public Schools. Proceeds from the Gala support the foundation’s mission to partner with teachers to enrich the learning environment for students by funding innovative programs and resources that stimulate creativity, promote excellence, and enable life-long learning. To date, the foundation has awarded more than $50,000 in classroom and student enrichment grants.
“When I joined the board in 2012, we had a meager $15,000,” Knight said. “Today the value of the endowment is over $800,000. That incredible momentum is thanks to the tireless work of our board, and the generous support of this community that recognizes the quality of our school district and sees the value in investing in it.”
Tickets for the Hall of Honor Gala can be purchased online by visiting the Conway Public School Foundation website at cpsfoundation.com/gala.