Dear Parents and Friends,
On Wednesday, January 11, we held a school assembly to honor the memory of Maralynn Viersen Sant. Maralynn, who was known as Granny Wonderful to her twelve grandchildren, was a huge supporter of education. She was born in Okmulgee on September 12, 1923. At the age of 15 she left Okmulgee to attend the Hockaday School for Girls in Dallas, and later attended the University of Texas in Austin. Through these personal experiences, Maralynn understood the difference a good education can make in a person’s life. She, along with the Viersen Foundation (which she led for the last 22 years), were and continue to be an important benefactor of Stonebridge. In honor of Maralynn, the Viersen Foundation recently established the Maralynn Viersen Sant Endowment Fund at Stonebridge Academy with a $250,000 donation. This fund will continue to make an impact on the lives of Okmulgee youth for generations to come. In honor of her generosity and in celebration of her life, the faculty and staff at Stonebridge wrote letters of thanks, and attached them with helium balloons to the fence on the school’s playground. Maralynn exemplified the schools motto which challenges its students to “Be Kind, Work Hard, and Get Smart.” She will be missed.
Mr. Hawthorne has over 17 years of experience in education, both in K-12 and college environments. He is a native Oklahoman and a graduate of Oklahoma State University where he received the Truman Scholarship. He completed his Master's degree at Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government, and is working on his doctorate in education (curriculum, teaching, learning and leadership) at Northeastern University in Boston. Mr. Hawthorne is the Founding Head of School of Stonebridge Academy.