Former City Manager Martin dies

August 26, 2020 | Featured|Headlines

PONCA CITY — Ponca City’s former city manager, Gary Martin, died Aug. 25.

Martin moved to Ponca City with his family from Okemah at the age of four.

He began his career with the City of Ponca City in the Parks and Recreation Department, moving up through the ranks as Parks Superintendent, Parks and Recreation Director, and Public Works Director, and becoming City Manager in 1993, retiring in 2009.

Gary Martin

In a press release issued by the City of Ponca City today, Martin is noted as a city manager who worked well with staff, commissioners, advisory boards, municipal, tribal, county, state, federal and international government representatives, citizens, community organizations, and businesses and industries. 

Martin is remembered as someone, who by working together with others, was able to achieve much through the many challenges that faced the community, including, the threat of electric deregulation; the unfunded federal and state mandates requiring multi-million dollar improvements to water, wastewater and solid waste facilities and operations; the successful passage of an unprecedented economic development tax that continues to diversify and grow our local economy; the renovation and expansion of the No. 1 Fire Station and City Hall, and the successful recovery of a major ice storm.

Martin served on countless boards and committees over the years, including the Chamber’s Infrastructure Committee, Legislative Committee and Centennial Committee. He volunteered at community events, whether it was decorating a float or serving hotdogs, and he found innovative ways to help support civic, economic development, tourism and Main Street endeavors.

He received national media attention with the implementation of an advanced meter infrastructure and energy-efficiency program, that continues to help the City improve its utility services to residents while reducing its energy and operating expenditures and impact on the environment. 

Martin was recognized as an innovative leader by state, national and international organizations, including the American Public Works Association, Solid Waste Association of North America, Oklahoma Municipal League, City Manager Association of Oklahoma, Ponca City Chamber of Commerce, and Oklahoma Hall of Fame for City and Town Officials. 

Through Martin’s leadership our community continues to be recognized across the state and nationally for not only completing projects successfully… but for working together as a community to accomplish lasting results… results that will continue to benefit our community for generations to come.

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