Feb. 10, 2021, will be known as “Beulah Garrett Day” in Lebanon as the longtime community volunteer celebrated her 90th birthday with a drive-by celebration at her home.
Garrett, born in 1931 in Gotebo, Okla., said she planned to celebrate her 90th birthday by sky diving — she celebrated her 80th birthday by bungee jumping — but had to change her plans.
“It’s wonderful. I feel fantastic,” she said. “I wanted to sky dive, but I called the airport and they said they don’t have anyone physically trained to do that here.”
Garrett instead celebrated in her front yard decorated with birthday signs and with desserts and treats inside her home.
Lebanon Mayor Rick Bell proclaimed Feb. 10 as “Beulah Garrett Day”. Garrett also received proclamations and memorabilia from the City of Lebanon, Wilson County and Mayor Randall Hutto and the State of Tennessee through Rep. Clark Boyd and Sen. Mark Pody.
“She’s somebody that I first got to know when we were on the planning commission together. She’s always been heavily involved in the community,” Bell said. “She’s somebody that I’ve come to know and love. She’s really been an asset to this entire city.”
Garrett joined the Lebanon-Wilson County Chamber of Commerce in 2006. She’s received a handful of awards since then, including the Volunteer of the Year Award in 2012, Friend of Education Award in 2016 and Lifetime Member Award in 2019.
She’s served as a Chamber ambassador, board member and presenter of a scholarship named for her to a student annually.
She’s also served on several Lebanon boards and committees, including the Lebanon Beautification Committee and Wilson One, and has been a strong supporter of Wilson Books from Birth since its inception.
“I moved here in 1990 and you couldn’t drive me away with a team of 90 horses. I love, love, love Lebanon,” Garrett said.
Garrett first worked as a file clerk with Northrop Aerospace. She was later transferred to the accounts payable department and automated the system. She was promoted to department head and became the first vice president of accounting and the first woman to hold that high of a position at Northrop.
Edward Jones financial advisor Laura Headley said Garrett’s presence was instrumental to her when she came to Lebanon about six years ago.
“I knew I needed to go to the Chamber, so I attended a membership committee meeting and Beulah was on that committee and she needed a ride home that day,” Headley said. “That started a friendship I was not expecting and she’s one of my dearest friends.”
Headley said Garrett’s advice and experience in business has also been greatly appreciated.
“I was newer at Edward Jones when I came over here and she kept encouraging me to get to know people, do the hard work and stick with it until I succeeded. She gave and continues to give me a lot of encouragement,” Headley said.