During the 2013-14 school year and for the first time ever, the Penn Manor Education Foundation is delighted to introduce our Foundation Ambassador program. Willis and Martha Herr make the perfect choice to serve as our first ever Ambassadors.
Martha attended Hambright Elementary and Willis attended Central Manor Elementary, and met at the “old” Penn Manor High School. Their first date was at the Senior Prom way back in 1960. Since then, Marty and Willis have been a true blue and gold Penn Manor couple. That high school romance lead to a lifetime of building a marriage and family, building a community based business and contributing to the Penn Manor School District in a wide variety of ways. Willis is a member of Penn Manor’s Distinguished Graduate Wall of Honor and has served as President of the both the Penn Manor Education Foundation Board and the Penn Manor School Board.
For 45 years Willis and Marty, or as Willis calls her, “his right-hand,” have operated Herr’s Fruit Farm, which is locally known for their roadside sales of fruit, flowers and Christmas trees. During their peak flower seasons the family business employed as many as 250 people and often times those employees were the students of Penn Manor High School. These Penn Manor students experienced their first job opportunity. They learned career responsibilities and for the first time were introduced to the true meaning of the phrase ”the crack of dawn. ” While working at the Herr’s market stands students learned to engage with and respond to customers, and how to do mental math without using a calculator. Most importantly our students employed by the Herrs learned how to think on their feet. Working for the Herrs meant joining the family and Willis and Marty love to tell of the friendships they developed with “their kids” and of the romances and even marriages that began at the fruit and flower stands.
Marty and Willis, who recently celebrated 50 years of marriage, are most proud of their seven children and their eight grandchildren who have all attended Penn Manor Schools.
As the Education Foundation first ever Ambassadors, Martha and Willis Herr will lend their support to alerting our community to the mission, programming and successes of the Penn Manor Education Foundation. Just as they have done for a lifetime, Willis and Martha will work to enhance the learning experiences of our Penn Manor students and to insure that Penn Manor continues to be a great place to raise a family and build a community.