Charlotte Church honoring longtime resident of Hidden Valley

title=wpil_keyword_linkCommunity Service Award.” title=”Marjorie Parker of Charlotte, NC, President of the Hidden Valley Community Association at her home in Charlotte, Thursday, October 13, 2022. Parker has lived in Hidden Valley for 45 years and is a recipient of the Northeast Community Service Award.” loading=”lazy”/>

Marjorie Parker of Charlotte, NC, President of the Hidden Valley Community Association at her home in Charlotte, Thursday, October 13, 2022. Parker has lived in Hidden Valley for 45 years and is a recipient of the Northeast Community Service Award.

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Marjorie Parker, a longtime resident of Hidden Valley in northeast Charlotte, will be honored Saturday with the Northeast Community Service Award presented by the Northeast Seventh-Day Adventist Church.

For nearly three decades, the church has honored Hidden Valley residents who have done everything they can with their ministry, said Evan Willis, pastor of Northeast SDA Church.

“We think it’s important to assert ourselves in our community,” Willis said.

Parker is being recognized for her work and role as president of the Hidden Valley Community Association, a post she accepted earlier this year. The honor was wonderful, she said, and motivated her to continue her community work.

“Often you think that what you do is underestimated,” she said. “That’s why it’s nice when someone thinks of you.”

Parker has lived in the Hidden Valley section since 1977 and has served in the community association since 2014.

One of their proudest accomplishments was partnering with Rebuilding Together of Greater Charlotte, a local nonprofit that will repair 30 homes in Hidden Valley. Another thing she’s proud of is that 500 people turned out for the National Night Out at Tom Hunter Park in August. The annual event is held across the country to connect police with the communities they serve.

Parker has also communicated with City of Charlotte officials to repair retirement homes in Hidden Valley through the city’s on-site program. This could help prevent gentrification in Hidden Valley, she said.

“If you see something that’s not good, you have to be part of the solution,” Parker said. “I think people underestimate the value they bring.”

Educating the neighborhood about gentrification and working on the renovation of Tom Hunter Park are also among the reasons Parker is recognized, said Derrick Miller, a member of the Northeast SDA Church.

“She’s the face of all the different positive things that’s happening in the community,” Miller said.

According to Willis, negative media narratives often interfere with work in Hidden Valley. But Parker has continued to showcase the positive work being done in the neighborhood alongside the Hidden Valley Community Association, he said.

“We (think) Marjorie Parker was excellent to lead this organization,” Willis said.

The event is open to the public and will take place at 11:30am at the church at 827 Tom Hunter Road.

This story was originally published October 14, 2022 6:00 a.m.

DJ Simmons reports on race and injustice for The Charlotte Observer. The South Carolina native previously worked for The Athens-Banner Herald through Report4America, where he covered underrepresented communities.

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