Press Releases

WASHINGTON- U.S. Senator John Boozman (R-AR) honored the life and legacy of Marked Tree Mayor Mary Ann Ritter Arnold, who passed away on December 21, 2017, in the Congressional Record, the official proceedings of Congress.

The following remarks are printed in the record: 

Mr. President, I rise today to remember the life and service of Mayor Mary Ann Ritter Arnold who served as mayor of Marked Tree, Arkansas in Poinsett County. Mayor Ritter passed away Thursday, December 21st at the age of 90.

Mary Ann was devoted to the town of Marked Tree and loved it as much as anybody. Her family has been a part of the town from its inception and she would fondly remark about how she loved “this little ol’ town” any chance she got.

Earlier in life, she studied at the University of Missouri where she graduated in 1948 with a degree in Home Economics and Fashion Design. She married her husband, Sidney and later they moved back to Mary Ann’s hometown of Marked Tree. In 1976, Mary Ann became president of E. Ritter & Company, one of the most successful family-owned businesses in Arkansas.

A trailblazer in many respects, Mary Ann was the first woman elected mayor of Marked Tree when she won the job in 2013. She gave back to the community in so many ways, both through the business she helped lead as well as through her own personal engagement and involvement with her neighbors and fellow citizens. 

Among her many notable accomplishments and activities, she was president of the Arkansas Telephone Association, president of the Arkansas Agricultural Council, was a longtime member and former president of the Marked Tree Rotary Club, served as a Justice of the Peace and was on the Poinsett County Quorum Court for 22 years. She also served on the St. Francis Levee Board and with the Crowley’s Ridge Girl Scout Council. In 2015, she was inducted into the Arkansas Women’s Hall of Fame. 

A devoted wife and mother, an astute and successful businesswoman and a dedicated public servant, Mayor Ritter is truly missed and admired. Her legacy lives on through her family and by way of the tremendous impact she had on so many in Marked Tree. I send my condolences to her loved ones and the community and join them in celebrating her remarkable life.