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 WASHINGTON, Sept. 30 /PRNewswire/ -- Margaret V. Thornton of Alexander City, Ala., was named the 1993 National Textile Citizen of the Year today at a ceremony at the Capitol Club.
 Thornton, 56, a compact production team coordinator for Russell Corporation, was selected for the honor by a panel of judges from a field of finalists from nine states. She devotes much of her spare time to the elderly and her church.
 The American Textile Manufacturers Institute (ATMI) sponsors the annual Textile Citizen of the Year program, which was established in 1987. The program identifies an hourly textile worker each year whose outstanding community volunteerism and work record best represent the spirit of the U.S. textile industry and its 670,000 employees.
 ATMI President Henry A. Truslow III introduced the finalists and winner today, presenting Thornton with a check for $1,000. U.S. Rep. John M. Spratt Jr. (D-S.C.), chairman of the Congressional Textile Caucus, spoke to the group.
 "Working full time and caring for one's family and raising children is a tremendous job," said Truslow. "Margaret has not only accomplished the difficult feat of providing for and raising her five children, alone, she has dedicated her time and effort to helping the elderly, her church and the children in her community. Margaret is an inspiration to all of us. The textile industry is very proud of her."
 Thornton was already a single mother of three when she adopted two more children, a 1-year-old boy and a 10-year-old boy, after their mother's death in 1976. Thornton has raised these five children by herself, working two jobs to support them.
 She has given her time and effort to the elderly by providing her own shuttle service. She provides transportation for doctor appointments, trips to the store, church, and errands. She prepares meals for the elderly, sick and disabled, and families with newborns.
 She is active in River Road Baptist Church where she serves as the assistant song director for the choir. She helps lead the church choir on Sundays and directs the choir and the congregation at night prayer meetings. She is the founder and leader of the Children's Church. She teaches Bible verses and stories, and organizes activities for the children to get involved in, such as supporting and visiting the sick and elderly.
 Thornton serves as the vacation Bible school director, which she has been doing since 1985. She assigns teachers to age groups, oversees commencement exercises, leads the singing sessions, reads scriptures and ensures availability of the kitchen staff.
 She serves on the church nominating committee which elects officers and teachers, the building fund which organizes fund raisers for the new sanctuary and education building, and the all-occasion committee which organizes celebrational activities involving church members. As a Bible school conference teacher, she instructs the teachers and leaders for the pre-middle school in her county.
 From 1973-1979, she was the youth leader for her church. She led the group to state wide youth conventions, organized retreats and activities including their Christmas program and prepared Sunday luncheons. She was a Sunday school teacher for 23 years.
 Thornton coaches a little girl's softball team and has been an active participant in the High School Mom's Football Club and the Tennis Mother's Club.
 McClellan Williams, personnel manager at Russell Corporation's Hi Tech plant who nominated her for the national honor, said: "Mrs. Thornton is a very concerned and sincere individual. She is definitely an outstanding citizen and an excellent role model for our city, state and country."
 The 1993 Textile Citizen of the Year finalists and their employers are:
 -- Alabama Margaret V. Thornton, Russell Corporation
 (in Alexander City)
 -- California Barry Wenzel, Dixie Yarns, Inc. (in Lemoore)
 -- Connecticut Melvin Bacha, Warren Corporation
 (in Stafford Springs)
 -- Georgia Perry M. Chubert, Mount Vernon Mills, Inc.
 (in Alto)
 -- North Carolina Chinnetta Brooks, Doran Textiles (in Shelby)
 -- Pennsylvania James S. Morrison Jr., Sunbury Textile Mills, Inc.
 (in Sunbury)
 -- South Carolina James E. Hughes, Springs Industries, Inc.
 (in Anderson)
 -- Tennessee Peggy Moore, Dixie Yarns, Inc. (in Chattanooga)
 -- Virginia Christa H. Allen, Burlington Industries, Inc.
 (in Halifax)
 -0- 9/30/93
 /CONTACT: Paula G. Barnett of American Textile Manufacturers Institute, 202-862-0550 or 703-848-8964/

CO: American Textile Manufacturers Institute ST: District of Columbia, Alabama IN: TEX SU:

BR-BN -- AT007 -- 7261 09/30/93 12:02 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Sep 30, 1993

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