Georgia Kidwell, Advocate for Children in Northeast Tarrant County, Remembered

November 8th, 2018

Georgia Kidwell, a friend to the Tarrant County community, area school children and the JPS Health Network, has passed away at the age of 86.

The JPS school-based clinic serving the children of the Hurst-Euless-Bedford school district, where Kidwell taught for three decades, was named in her honor in 2009.

A rescue helicopter lands at JPS

Georgia Kidwell cuts the ribbon at the school-based health center named in her honor in 2009.

“As a second grade teacher she saw so many kids who didn’t have the health care and vision care that they needed and deserved,” Kidwell’s daughter, Susan Pine of El Paso, said. “So, it became her passion to find a way to help those children who couldn’t help themselves. She loved Northeast Tarrant County and wanted to do everything she could for it and for its people. She got so many things done. It’s very inspiring.”

JPS President and CEO Robert Earley said he will always remember Kidwell as a person who made those around her better.

“I was lucky to know Georgia. She was a gifted woman with a heart of gold, but she kept you on your toes. You never wanted to disappoint her,” Earley said. “Everyone at JPS who had the privilege to know her will miss her.”  

Kidwell was a member of the League of Women Voters of Tarrant County for nearly 50 years. She also was a Rotarian as well as a member of the American Association of University Women and numerous other clubs and charitable organizations. She was named to the Hurst-Euless-Bedford Chamber of Commerce Hall of Fame in 2011.

“I was chair of the Northeast Advisory Board for many years and we worked very hard for a long time to get a school-based clinic in the northeast part of Tarrant County because we saw the need,” Kidwell remembered during an interview in July. “I was so surprised when I was told they wanted to dedicate the building in my name. It’s a very nice honor. I never expected anything like that.”

Dr. Gene Buinger, then superintendent of HEB schools, said during the 2009 dedication ceremony of the Georgia Kidwell School-Based Health Center that naming the facility after the retired teacher and community activist made too much sense not to do so.

“What a perfect name for a child healthcare center -- Kidwell,” Buinger remarked at the dedication ceremony. “That's what it's all about, helping kids get well as soon as possible so they can be in school where learning can take place.”

The school-based clinic championed by the longtime teacher and mentor remains a reminder of all she gave to the community. The Georgia Kidwell School-Based Clinic continues its job of providing primary medical care to countless children, regardless of social or economic status.

“I really believe the establishment of the school-based clinics is one of the very best things that JPS has ever done,” Kidwell said over the summer. “They’re wonderful because they take all children, and the school districts appreciate that they keep their kids healthy and in the classroom. It’s a great service that has been very successful.”

Kidwell died Nov. 2 in El Paso. Pine said Wednesday that funeral arrangements have not yet been announced.

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