An avid gardener, Ann Blaugrund Marks cultivated her own backyard, and sowed inquisitiveness and culture in her El Paso community.
Yetta Ann Blaugrund was born in El Paso and lived most of her life in the Kern and Mission Hills neighborhoods. Though she had a small immediate family, she was close with her extended family and spoke with them daily until the end of her life.
While enrolled at the University of Texas at Austin, Ann met, danced with, and fell in love with Alvin Marks. The two eventually returned to El Paso and built a home in Mission Hills, where Ann resided for the rest of her life. The garden Ann cultivated there was a lifelong project. In addition to several blue ribbons, her garden earned her the nickname, “The Flower Lady” around El Paso. “People would come from all over the city just to see her yard,” said her son, Alan Marks.
Like her “jungle in the desert” garden, Ann’s approach to civic involvement and philanthropy focused on helping the community flourish. “It really mattered to her to give everyone a stake in the future,” said her daughter, Jan Marks.
Ann was committed to the arts and established the Ann Blaugrund Marks Fund for the Arts at the El Paso Community Foundation. She volunteered at libraries and the art museum, and enthusiastically supported IMPACT Programs of Excellence, an organization that brought famous artists, thinkers, and politicians to speak and perform in El Paso.
Throughout her life, Ann was kind, generous, and thoughtful toward her community and family. She planted seeds of knowledge and curiosity that will bloom forever through her fund with the El Paso Community Foundation.
Farewell, dear friend.