Dyersburg’s Bob Kirk, Columbia’s Christa Martin honored with new annual award

The Tennessee Municipal League honored long-time Dyersburg Alderman Bob Kirk and Columbia Vice Mayor Christa Martin at their 79th Annual Conference in Knoxville for their dedicated years of public service.

Kirk has announced his plans not to run for reelection, following nearly 51 years of service on the Dyersburg Board of Mayor and Aldermen. During his tenure on the Dyersburg board, Kirk has been actively involved in the Tennessee Municipal League. Kirk has been to every TML Conference since he was first elected as an alderman, serving on the TML Board of Directors and as TML Board President for 2004-5. He is presently chairman of the Tennessee Municipal Bond Fund and served on TACIR for eight years.

In recognition of his dedicated service, the Tennessee Municipal League is honoring Kirk with a new award that will bear his name, The Bob Kirk Local Government Leadership Award. The award will be presented each year to a council member, alderman, or commissioner who has shown themselves to be an outstanding public servant to both their municipality and their community, and continues to go above and beyond the call of duty to better his or her community.

The inaugural recipient of the Bob Kirk Local Government Leadership award is Columbia Vice Mayor Dr. Christa Martin who was first appointed to the Columbia City Council in 1992. She held a seat on the council representing Columbia’s Third Ward until 2014, when she was elected vice mayor, becoming the first black woman to hold the position in Columbia. She also serves as an at-large member of the Tennessee Municipal League Board of Directors.

In addition to her work on the city council, Martin has worked for Columbia State Community College as a programmer analyst, assistant director, and director of computer services since 1979. Martin presently serves as assistant to the president for access and diversity, and was given the school’s 2015 Harold Love Outstanding Community Service Award for her dedication to public service. Martin has served on more than 23 local boards and committees and is an elder at her church.