Cumberland Times-News

Local News

October 15, 2012

Jim Ortiz marshal for 63rd Halloween parade

CUMBERLAND — Jim Ortiz, who served as president of the South Cumberland Business and Civic Association for the past 18 years, will be the parade marshal for the 63rd annual Halloween parade Oct. 24.

During his term in office, Ortiz promoted many improvements and activities, including obtaining funds for new lamp posts and Christmas lights on Virginia Avenue. Membership was increased and the pavilion and grounds at Smith Park, where the judging of the Halloween mummers is held prior to the start of the parade, were refurbished.

Ortiz has served each year as a judge for the mummers contest. He also organized the fun fair in honor of Jim Scarpelli Sr., one of the founders of the association. Active in both the community and the political arena, Ortiz campaigns for national, state and local candidates. Gov. Martin O’Malley was the first governor to attend the Halloween parade at the invitation of Ortiz.  

His community involvement has included member of the Board of Trustees at Frostburg State University and Allegany County Human Resources Development Commission. He has served as president of the Engineers Club, chairman of the Democratic State Central Committee, chairman of the Allegany County Board of License Commissioners and board member of the Kensington and Maryland Association of Community Colleges.

During the years of the Christopher Columbus Festival held at Smith Park, Ortiz portrayed Columbus in full costume and would also visit local elementary schools to share history with the students on Columbus Day.

Ortiz is a member of the Knights of Columbus, Alhambra Wamba Caravan 89, Democrat Club and the South Cumberland Business and Civic Association. He also serves on the board of the Salvation Army and the Allegany College of Maryland Board of Trustees as well as a member of the Fraternal Order of Police and the Allegany County Career and Technical Education Center.

A member of Our Lady of the Mountains Parish, he serves as a lector, eucharistic minister and choir member at St. Mary’s Catholic Church.

Ortiz also was selected for the Small Garden Club award by the Cumberland Garden Club and the Community Leadership Award by the Woodmen of the World.  

A retiree as manager of the Kelly-Springfield tire testing department, he is a graduate of the University of Pittsburgh and has a master’s degree in business administration from Frostburg State University.

Jim and Dolores Ortiz are the parents of three grown children and fondly remember taking them and their grandchildren to the Halloween parade.

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