NEW MADRID - Dr. Mark Baker of New Madrid was presented with the Missouri Interscholastic Athletic Administrators Association's (MIAAA) Distinguished Service Award.
Kent Gibbs, Fredericktown High School athletic director and president of MIAAA, presented Baker with the award. The MIAAA's Distinguished Service Award goes to the individuals who have devoted a large portion of their lives to giving back to their communities, through their local schools and athletic programs.
Baker has been a fixture within the New Madrid County Central athletic programs since the school's inception in 1981. He has given countless hours and efforts working with the school, its coaches and athletes to provide greater opportunity for its young people.
Baker graduated from New Madrid High School in 1971 and attended Three Rivers Community College on a basketball scholarship, where he played two seasons.
Upon graduation from Three Rivers, Baker signed a letter of intent to play basketball for Southeast Missouri State University. Upon completion of his undergraduate degree, Baker graduated from the University of Missouri-Kansas City Dental School; he practiced his dentistry in New Madrid from 1979 to 1993.
At that time, Baker took over full operation of the family farming business and continues in that capacity today. In addition, he also presides as the mayor or New Madrid and is the New Madrid County Health Inspector.
Baker is married to the former Lydia Riley and they have two children, Addie Lawfield and Vest Baker. They four grandchildren, Kaitlyn, Kathyrn, Mollie and Blaire.