Grant Foreman Elementary Leadership
Principal, 6th Grade Academy @ Grant Foreman
Mrs. Watkins was named Principal of the 6th Grade Academy @ Grant Foreman in April 2019. She previously served Muskogee Public Schools as principal of Pershing Elementary since 2014. She previously held the position of Principal at Fogarty Elementary and Central Elementary for Guthrie Public Schools and also as a classroom teacher.
Mrs. Watkins earned a Bachelors of Science in Elementary Education and Early Childhood at Northwestern Oklahoma State University, and a Masters of Education in Education Administration from the University of Central Oklahoma. She currently serves as a board member of the Bridges Out of Poverty organization.
Karen has been married to her husband Rafe, for 30 years. Rafe is the Head Football Coach for Muskogee High School and they are proud to call Muskogee home. They have two children and a son-in-law; Ashley Hansen and her husband Tanner and Hunter Watkins. Ashley and Tanner are expecting their first child in October and we are so excited to become grandparents. Mrs. Watkins invites you to stop by Pershing and see the exciting things that are going on. It is their mission to make every day amazing! #Best Day Ever!!
Assistant Principal, 6th Grade Academy @ Grant Foreman
Steve Barton joined the Muskogee 6th Grade Academy administration for the 2020-2021 school year. He previously served Muskogee Public Schools as the Ninth Grade Principal at Muskogee High School from 2018-2020.
He began his career in education in 1991 and has served Stilwell, Warner, Cave Springs, and Checotah Public School Districts throughout his career while also coaching basketball, baseball, softball, and football. In 2006, Barton moved into administration as a high school assistant principal, high school principal, and middle school principal.
Barton joined MPS in 2015 as Principal at Rougher Alternative Academy before being named Assistant Principal at Alice Robertson Junior High a year later. He served as assistant principal at Alice Robertson for two years prior to joining MHS.
Barton was born and raised in Stilwell, Okla. where he had a successful high school athletics career competing in football, basketball and baseball. On the baseball diamond he held the state record of most career wins (48) and most consecutive wins (25) while leading Stilwell to the first state baseball championship in 1985. He earned a baseball scholarship to Connors State College, was drafted in the third round of the 1986 Major League Baseball Winter Phase Draft by the Philadelphia Phillies but returned to school where he was named a 1987 NJCAA All-American as a third baseman. He transferred to Oral Roberts University to complete his athletic eligibility before finishing his degree at Northeastern State University in Tahlequah, Okla. He went on to earn a Masters in College Teaching from Northeastern State.
He and his wife Stephanie have three children, Ethan, Evan, and Caroline.