Keller Middle Principal Diane Phelan and Pasadena ISD Board Secretary Marshall Kendrick reflect on old times during a dedication ceremony honoring Kendrick.
Longtime friends Marshall Kendrick and Board member Fred Roberts share a laugh.
A man of integrity, unwavering compassion and generosity – these are some of the warm sentiments echoed by Pasadena ISD Board members, district administration, and campus leaders who gathered March 8 for the Marshall Kendrick Middle School building dedication, honoring the school’s namesake.
“Through his service, Marshall continuously supports and advocates for initiatives and projects in the district that ensure students receive a quality education in a first-class learning environment,” Mariselle Quijano, School Board president said. “As a result, Pasadena ISD has successful campuses like this one that bears his name. Marshall, your legacy will always be alive inside these walls and in the hearts of those who pass through here.”
The ceremony welcomed over 250 guests including his wife of 54 years, Denie, a Pasadena ISD retiree, and their children, Brooke Bennett and Trey Kendrick, both Sam Rayburn graduates. The dedication included performances by the school orchestra and choir, followed by remarks from leaders in the district, then a video presentation.
Humbled by the honor, Kendrick said, “They say a man’s wealth is measured by the friends he keeps and I thank you for making me feel like a very wealthy man tonight.”
Kendrick has served on the school board for 27 years, where he continuously supports high school football games, the arts and the McDonald’s Texas Invitational Basketball Tournament through his volunteer work on the steering committee.
As a deacon at South Main Baptist Church and all-around humanitarian, Kendrick has garnered the respect and admiration of the Pasadena community. He participates in the benevolence fund and the finance committee at his church. He also serves on the board and golf committee with Mission Centers of Houston. Additionally, Kendrick travels to Peru with Operacion San Andreas, a faith-based organization that builds houses for families in need.
“Serving on the Board with him for the past seven years, I have seen, first-hand, his unwavering passion and dedication for Pasadena ISD schools and the Pasadena community,” Quijano said. “His integrity, compassion and gift for giving has garnered the respect and admiration of his peers, community members and local leaders.”
Diane Phelan, Keller principal, watched proudly as Kendrick, whom she has known all her life, approached the podium.
“He’s all about the kids,” Phelan said. “He taught me in Sunday school and handed me my diploma when I graduated from South Houston High School. I’ve seen him give to the church financially and theologically. He is such a good person and so deserving of this recognition.”
Building for the Future
Also present at the event was former school superintendent Dr. Kirk Lewis, the construction and design staff from Randall-Porterfield, general contractors from Drymalla Construction and members of the future facilities committee, who recommended the addition of the campus to the district.
“I speak for all of us when I say we truly appreciate the community and taxpayers for supporting the construction of this campus by the passage of the 2011 schoolhouse bond,” Powell said. “An integral part of any successful bond campaign is the Facilities Committee, we thank you for recognizing the contributions of our board secretary, a man worthy of this honor.”
Construction on the 130,000 square-foot facility began in October 2013. And in August of 2015, the school, located on 3000 Watters Road, opened its doors to 730 students and Marshall Kendrick Middle School was born.
The school’s principal Melissa Messenger expressed warm sentiments about the finished campus and the “unlimited opportunities” she hopes the campus will provide for students.
“Our hope is to empower students to be bold enough to take risks, be brave enough to lead the way and never ever be broken by anything standing in their way," Messenger said. "This amazing facility has provided the structure for all of this to occur, and that is thanks to all those who have helped along the way, including Marshall Kendrick.”
Pasadena ISD Board of Trustees (from L to R): Fred Roberts, Jack Bailey, Vickie Morgan, Marshall Kendrick, Nelda Sullivan, Kenny Fernandez and Mariselle Quijano.
Kendrick and wife, Denie, watch a video presentation with their family and the board.
Former School Superintendent Kirk Lewis made an appearance at the ceremony to congratulate Kendrick on the honor. Pictured: Kirk Lewis, Kendrick Principal Melissa Messenger, Denie Kendrick and husband Marshall, and School Superintendent Dr. DeeAnn Powell.