Tulsan of the Year 2021 header

To say 2020 brought Tulsa unprecedented challenges is, in many ways, an understatement. As of Dec. 21, 350 Tulsa County residents had died from complications of COVID-19. Difficult decisions became the norm. News alerts communicated near-constant warnings about the global pandemic that made its first appearance in Tulsa in March. 

The pandemic has tested each of us, but Tulsans also endured other difficulties in 2020. Two Tulsa police officers were shot; one died — the first officer killed in the line of duty in 24 years. Protests in response to the deaths of Black men and women brought citizens together to support criminal justice reform. Tulsa, and the state, continues to face a teacher shortage, and countless Tulsans experienced hardship with food and shelter insecurity. 

Yet Tulsans stepped up in 2020 to address these issues and help their neighbors. And we continue to do so. For these reasons, and countless others, we recognize all Tulsans with our greatest honor: YOU are Tulsan of the Year.

 


 

2020 in three words

 

Colossal, unprecedented, nightmare. 

Wendell Franklin, Tulsa Police Department chief

  

Dissolution of normalcy.

Whitney Burk, A.P.R.N., Tulsa Health Department

  

Challenging, perseverance, loss.

Christina Howard, R.N., Ascension St. John

 

Bravery, teamwork, gratitude.

Doug Williams, senior vice president and administrator of Saint Francis Hospital

 

Long, challenging, heavy.

Michelle Lambkins, kindergarten teacher, Broken Arrow Public Schools

 

Painful, mayhem, resilience.

Randy Williams, high school English teacher, Jenks Public Schools

 

Stress, anxiety, uncertainty.

Tracy Smith, fourth-grade Spanish immersion teacher, Tulsa Public Schools 

 

Terrifying, debilitating, helpless.

Melissa Boudiette, first-through third-grade teacher, Tulsa Public Schools 

 

Distant, busy, evolving.

Leah Mueller, mother of two

 

Beautiful sh** sandwich.

Shane Bevel, father of two

 

Unexpected, challenging, frustrating.

Tracy Peralta, mother of three

 

Year of reflection.

Talitha Jacobs, mother of three

 

Keep on praying.

Vonceil Bell, Tulsa Transit

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.