Recognized for her time and effort in making a contribution to the Arkansas City community, Cowley College creative director Denise Irwin was recently honored with the Community Cornerstone Award. Each month the Community Cornerstone committee honors a volunteer for their work in helping make contributions to the Arkansas City community.
Irwin received the award for her mural work and the work she has done with the downtown revitalization and historic preservation. Irwin has done four murals with a fifth in the works. She has done murals for the Cowley College track and field facility, Cowley College Underground, Chestnut Street Underpass, the Arkansas City Community Mural at Jefferson and Summit, and the Fifth Avenue Street mural that she and Cowley College instrumental music director Gary Gackstatter are in the process of working on.
Irwin is also a founding member of the Fifth Avenue Ring, a group that is focused on revitalization and preservation of the downtown area. The group recently completed a new walking tour brochure of the downtown, and are working closely with the city on the upcoming streetscape that will begin in late May. They are also responsible for the street banners. “She is very deserving of this honor,” said Cowley College board member Donna Avery. “She has contributed so much to the beginning of the mural projects around town, and I can only envision that these will continue to brighten up our corner of the world, which we call Ark City. I also personally appreciate the fine contributions she is making at Cowley.”