The rodeo is in town! The 74th Annual Gladewater Round-Up Rodeo will be held June 8-11, beginning at 8:15 p.m. each evening, at the state-of-the art Gladewater rodeo grounds. The Gladewater Rodeo has grown to be one of the premier rodeos in the country, and in 2008 was inducted into the Texas Rodeo Cowboy Hall of Fame. Proceeds from the four-night event will help fund scholarships for area graduating seniors.
“Y’ALL COME” is the message and invitation Walter Derrick sends out to the residents of Gladewater and all the surrounding communities. Mr. Derrick serves on the board of directors for the rodeo association and has been actively involved in ensuring the success of this annual event.
Mr. Derrick said, “The entire family can enjoy this event together! The directors and volunteers work very hard, with the goal that every person can have a good time.”
In addition to his commitment to the rodeo, Mr. Derrick serves the residents of Gladewater as Mayor. He also served as a city councilman before becoming Mayor. Mr. Derrick serves as a board member for the Gladewater Economic Development Corporation and the East Texas Council of Governments, and sits on the advisory board for Texas Eastman.
“I think my heart is the best part of me, so I look at the world around me through the eyes of my heart,” Mr. Derrick said. “My heart actually shows me more work, more needs, than my hands can do. My mind picks from that great list what my hands may be able to do. Then, with my heart in it, my mind and my hands, all working together, I do whatever I can to improve the lives of those around me by volunteering my efforts. I pray for success.”
Mr. Derrick was born in Gilmer, Texas. He graduated as class valedictorian from Weldon High School in Gladewater, and obtained both his bachelor’s degree and master’s degree at Texas College in Tyler. Mr. Derrick and his wife, Evergrace, have been married 55 years and are the parents of three adult children. Mr. and Mrs. Derrick are members of Pine Grove Baptist Church in Gilmer, where Mr. Derrick serves as deacon board chairman. He is a retired teacher and coach, beginning his career at Bruce High School in Gilmer, and retiring in 1988 after 31 years with the Gladewater Independent School District.
“I enjoy living in Gladewater because I found my comfort zone here. Since moving here with my Mom at age 11, I’ve always been able to achieve a measure of success. From my teachers in school…, to my own teaching/coaching career, to raising my children, even to this point I have found that some of the best people in the world must surely be right here,” Mr. Derrick said.
For more information about the 74th Annual Gladewater Round-Up Rodeo, please visit www.gladewaterrodeo.com