Cristoba Carter has been selected to be the grand marshal in this year’s Englewood Christmas Parade.
Carter stated that she felt excited and complimented to be asked to be this year’s grand marshal.
“It is not my cup of tea to be asked to do stuff like this,” she stated. “But I am very complimented that you all thought about asking me.”
Carter has spent her entire life in the Town of Englewood and expressed what the town means to her.
“I cannot be thankful enough that I grew up in a town like Englewood. It was just perfect,” Carter said. “To look back on it, we could walk to school safely, even after I married we lived close to the school and my boys got to walk to school and never had to worry about their safety. It was just a good hometown and I can’t describe how thankful I am that I grew up here.”
After starting her collegiate career at East Tennessee State University and then transferring to Tennessee Wesleyan College (now University) to finish up, Carter spent her career as a teacher.
“When I went back to Wesleyan, I just think this was God’s will that this happened, my desire was always to teach physical education. That was my dream before I even started college and somebody tapped me on my shoulder as I was sitting in class and told me that the superintendent wanted to see me after class,” Carter recalled. “I went by the office and he told me that the girl who was teaching physical education at Englewood was having to move and that he wanted me to interview for the job. So the timing on that was just perfect and there I was graduating from that course.”
Carter started teaching in 1967 and obtained her masters degree 15 years later from the University of Tennessee.
“I taught for 32 years and I enjoyed every day of it,” she expressed.
“It made it special to teach in the school that I grew up in.”
In addition to being a school teacher, Carter played the piano for Englewood First Baptist Church.
“I started playing piano when I was six years old and all throughout the years I had about three different music teachers,” Carter said. “I have played for the church for over 60 years.”
Looking ahead to the Englewood parade, Carter noted that it is an honor to have been chosen as the grand marshal.
“I remember the past people who have been chosen to be grand marshals and I feel honored,” she expressed.
According to Community Action Group of Englewood (CAGE) Chairman Mark Cochran, the decision to make Carter grand marshal was due to her being a person who represents the Town of Englewood well.
“The grand marshal is someone who represents the town’s values, someone the town looks up to and someone who has made a lasting impact,” Cochran said. “There is no question that Carter checks all those boxes. She has taught thousands of children, working as a teacher in both physical education and later literature.”