Turnbull Clan Association

John Fisher Turnbull Lifetime Achievement Award Presented to Brian Turnbull

brianMyra Turnbull, co-founder of TCA, and our matriarch presented the John F. Turnbull Lifetime Acheivement Award to Brian Turnbull received the award for his 20 plus years of service to TCA that have included being webmaster and genealogist. He has perhaps contributed more hours of service to our clan than any other single individual. Yet, he has done so quietly without any fanfare. Congratulations, Brian, and thank you from your TCA family.

John Fisher Turnbull Lifetime Achievement Award Presented to Wally Turnbull

wallyMyra Turnbull, co-founder of TCA, and our matriarch presented the John F. Turnbull Lifetime Acheivement Award to Wally Turnbull who recently stepped down as TCA President. During his time as President, he accomplished many goals. Wally was instrumental in acquiring official arms for TCA, granted and registered by the Lyon Court. But, perhaps Wally will most be remembered for his dream of creating a destination place in the Borders for his TCA family resulting in the creation of the Turning of the Bull Monument in Hawick.

2019 Clan Member of the Year Award to Fiona Turnbull

 fionaAt the 2019 AGM in Hawick, Scotland, VP Jeff Trimble pre­sented Fiona Turnbull with the Clan Member of the Year Award. Fiona has represented Clan Turnbull well through the Hawick Reivers Festival, as our own genalogist who is always willing to help a fellow clan member and recently as being named Project Administrator to the Trimble/Turnbull DNA Project. Well deserved, Fiona!


2018 Clan Members of the Year Bill and Claudia Trimble

be 2018 v19 n03 Image 3It was Wally’s honor  to  present this year’s award  to  Clan  Memers  of  the  Year, Bill and Claudia Trimble. In addition to their tent hosting, Bill and Claudia have worked hard at increasing tent representation the past two years. They were also nstrumental in organizing this year’s AGM. CONGRATULATIONS Bill and Claudia.  Well deserved.

John Fisher Turnbull Lifetime Achievement Award Granted Simultaneously to Three Very Special People

schwierking janet mark turnbull  turnbull john grason
It is my great pleasure to announce that the TCA board of Directors have unanimously awarded the John Fisher Turnbull Lifetime Achievement Award for valuable service to our clan over many years. This award was announced at the 2016 AGM. You can view the presentation on YouTube at https://youtu.be/NOEn5oYkreU.
Note that this is not the Clan Member of the Year award. It is the highest honor that TCA grants and is only given occasionally for exceptional service over a number of years. You will be pleased to know that although this award is rarely granted, this year we felt it fitting to grant it simultaneously to three very special people who, together, played key roles in the development of TCA, helping it become what it is today: Janet Turnbull Schwierking, Mark A. Turnbull, and John Grason Turnbull.
With congratulations and sincere thanks,

Kenneth Turnbull 2015 Clan Member of the Year

turnbull kennethKenneth Turnbull, our Vice-President for International News and Events who was awarded the Clan Member of the Year award for 2016 joined us by Skype from Australia. His plaque arrived a couple of days later and the attached picture has been received by email.  This is truly the electronic age and TCA is happy to be using the media offered to share our heritage and fraternity with members all over the world.  Kenneth has done a huge and excellent job on the book Border Tales and Trails. He has long been a contributor to the Bullseye and this year joined Betty as Co-Editor. His contribution to our Clan has been great and good.  We were happy to recognize and to thank him.

Norman Turnbull Lifetime Achievement Award

norman mountainsNorman L. Turnbull, the recipient of the 2014 Lifetime Achievement Award, dedicated his last years to recording the history of the Turnbull Clan. Norman’s widow, Terri Booth Turnbull, received the award posthumously.
Norman Turnbull, born June 30, 1942 in Edinburgh, Scotland, grew up on a farm, loving the outdoors. As a young adult Norman served his country well in the Royal Air Force. When his career was ended after 12 years due to damage to his eardrums, Norman successfully ran a garage for several years. Yearning for the outdoor life he loved, he sold that business and became a shepherd, where he said, “For once in my life, I felt at peace.” After retirement, Norman was introduced to the Turnbull Clan Association and was made the Clan’s Schenachie or record keeper. He took his position very seriously and documented much of the Borders’ and Turnbull history. It was during this time that Norman met his beloved Terri. Terri and Norman were married in 2012 by Clan President Wally Turnbull in the beautiful mountains of North Carolina, USA. Norman’s dedication to the Turnbull Clan, including his “birthing” of the Turnbull Bedrule Castle Cairn, his documenting the Turnbull Trails and recording of early history will never be forgotten. It has earned him a place as a John F. Turnbull Lifetime Achievement recipient. The first recipient of the award was Myra Turnbull, who worked tirelessly with her husband founding the Turnbull Clan Association.

The John F. Turnbull Lifetime Achievement Award is not an annual award. This award, dedicated to the founder of Turnbull Clan Association, is given very rarely for recognition of outstanding service and dedication to the Turnbull Clan Association and its members.

Read about other recipients of the The John F. Turnbull Lifetime Achievement Award

2014 Clan Member of the Year

Gemma Member of the yearThe Clan Member of the Year Award for 2014 was presented to Gemma (honorary Turnbull) Barnard. Gemma grew up in the Borders and spent much of her youth climbing up to Fatlips Castle. When she saw the Castle that she loved so much begin to fall into disrepair, she started a campaign to restore the castle. This awareness of the state of the castle did indeed after many years result in the restoration of Fatlips Castle. Gemma was also working closely with Norman Turnbull with his dream of building the Bedrule Castle Cairn. After Norman’s death, she took on the project. Without her dedicated service from working with authorities, to gathering stone, finding a mason to build the Cairn and overseeing the project, the Turnbull Bedrule Castle Cairn would have died with Norman’s dreams.
The Turnbull Clan is indebted to Gemma not only for what she has done for the Clan but for all she has accomplished in keeping the buildings and history of the Borders alive.
Gemma currently resides in Bonchester Bridge. Her dream job is to find funding to restore towerhouses, castles and old buildings in the Borders.

2013 Clan Member of the Year

clan member2013“In recognition of his outstanding service and dedication to the Turnbull Clan Association and its membership, it is my honor and privilege to present this year’s Clan Member of the Year Award to Dale R. Hilding,” Wally Turnbull, President.
Dale and his wife Mary Kay Hilding have been Turnbull Clan tent hosts and supporting TCA since 2000. Dale is best known for the 100 lbs of chain mail armour that he sports during the games. These games very often take place in hot and humid weather. As friend and Turnbull Clan Vice President of Events William C. Trimble said, “It is fitting that Dale receive this award, after all, who else walks around wearing 110 pounds of armour in 110 degree weather representing his clan.”
In addition to representing TCA and sharing the Turnbull heritage so well, Dale is well respected outside of TCA. He volunteers his services to many organizations and can always be counted on to lend a hand.
Congratulations and thank you to Dale R. Hilding, Turnbull Clan Association Clan Member of the Year. (Dale and Mary Kay were not able to attend the Richmond games. William C. Trimble presented them with the award at their home.)

Betty Turnbull 2012 Lifetime Achievement Award

turnbull bettyRhet announced that the officers were pleased to present another award, that had only been presented once before. It was the honored John F. Turnbull Lifetime Achievement Award. This is not an annual award, but rather one to celebrate and honor a clan member’s achievements on behalf of TCA during his/her lifetime. He was pleased to present the award to Betty Turnbull, Editor of the Bullseye, for her contribution to the Clan through the Bullseye newsletters, preserving Clan history and serving the Clan administration in a multitude of ways. It was a great surprise and very special moment for Betty as she was presented with this award. She feels very honored and humbled to be in the company of the first recipient, Myra Turnbull TCA co-founder.

2012 Clan Member of the Year

seattle8 Rhet announced the winner of this year’s Clan Member of the Year Award. Betty, Bullseye Editor, was delighted to be able to help present the award to a very surprised and speechless Kim Trimble. Kim has helped with Clan Tents, encouraging other members in how to begin as tent hosts for many years and most recently has served as the Feature Editor of the Bullseye. Kim finds a unique way to present stories of Scotland's past and present in the Bullseye that both entertain and educate its readers.

Rhet Turnbull, President

I want to take this opportunity with my first column as TCA President to introduce myself and reflect on this past year. My name is Rhet  Turnbull. I’m 36 years old and an officer in the United States Air Force. My lovely bride Sarah and I have been married for 12 years and have two children, Vivian, age 7, and Camden, age 4. We live near Omaha, Nebraska. I’m an avid runner and also enjoy reading and computers.
Wow! What a year to be a Turnbull. In 2009 hundreds of Turnbulls from around the world returned to our ancestral homeland in the Scottish Borders to celebrate our common heritage. We saw the Turnbull flag flying above the Town Hall in Hawick and witnessed the unveiling of the magnificent Turning of the Bull monument. Who would have imagined that a small clan from the Borders would one day receive such honors? All the accomplishments of this past year have been made possible by the vision and dedication of members of Turnbull Clan Association who are committed to preserving our shared legacy. All of us benefit from the hard work of these passionate volunteers.
I know that each of us appreciates Turnbull Clan Association, but have you ever stopped to think about what it takes to make TCA run? The Bullseye needs to be compiled and edited, the website needs updating, someone has to collect the dues and raise funds for projects like the monument and the arms, somebody has to send out letters to new members. Others write articles for the Bullseye while some help members research their genealogy. Many members host game tents at Highland Games around the country to teach people about the Turnbulls and promote TCA. Our association exists for the members but it also exists because of the members.
As I start my term of service as a TCA officer, my hope is that each of us will be inspired by the labors of our fellow members to continue doing great things for Turnbulls world wide. We’ve been blessed by dedicated members such as Wally Turnbull, Janet Turnbull Schwierking, and Bill Trimble who have given their time & effort to serve as TCA officers. To them, we say Thank-You! They helped to make 2009 an amazing year for all Turnbulls. Bill, Brian, Christine, and I will do our best to do the same for 2010 and, with your help, I know we can do it!

turnbull rhet familySarah, Vivian, Camden and Rhet Turnbull

Wallace (Wally) Rutherford Turnbull Jr.

wally turnbullWally Turnbull received his BA in Psychology from Rockford College in 1970 and his MFA from Ohio University in 1972.
Wally was born and raised in Haiti where he resided with his missionary parents until 1963 when he left to pursue his education. He later returned with his wife Betty in 1972 and served with the Baptist Haiti Mission for 30 years. The couple has recently moved to Durham, North Carolina.
During his missionary career, Wally directed a self-help program which trained and helped over 2,000 families market handcrafts and agricultural products. He also directed the mission’s rural school program of 330 schools, 1,500 teachers, and 63,000 students.
In 1978, Wally received a Diplôme de Citation from the Haitian Department of Education for his work in rural education. He also received the Award of Distinction from Rockford College in 1983 for his humanitarian work in Haiti.
Wally and Betty have three children; Wallace III, Andrew Roy, and Elizabeth Jane, all of whom were born and raised in Haiti and now live in the United States.
Wally’s interests include photography, travel, computer graphics design, the Turnbull Clan, and gardening

turnbull wally family

John G. Turnbull

turnbull john gJohn was born in New York in 1941, and traces his Scottish ancestry from a William Turnbull who came from Scotland in the 1770 and settled in Philadelphia. His ancestors fought on the American side in the Revolutionary War, and on both sides of the Civil War. He has been a member of Turnbull Clan Association since July 11, 1978, soon after the Clan was formed. He is also a member of the St. Andrew’s Society of Baltimore and New York State, since 1965 and 1972, respectively. He is member of the Scottish Tartans Society, the Scottish Tartans Educational and Cultural Society. Other areas of interest have led him to become a member of the New York Caledonian Club and the North American Branch of the Celtic League. He is one of the few American members of the Scottish Historical Society. He has an A.B., and M.B.A., and post-graduate certificates. He plays the Highland Bagpipe, and has competed in Grade 5 Band competition, but recently has given up playing for the time being. He is married to Silvia Garcia Turnbull, who fled from Communist Cuba in 1961. He has a son by a previous marriage who is also a member of Turnbull Clan.

1979 Dorothy Turnbull Berk, Chartered a US branch of TCA

In 1979, Dorothy Turnbull Berk, chartered a US branch of Turnbull Clan Association and began contacting Turnbulls in the US to become a part. Soon, there were branches in Australia and New Zealand. Today, with improved communications and Internet support, TCA operates as one large international clan association uniting members from Canada, Cuba, Mexico, New Zealand, Portugal, the United Kingdom, the United States, and growing.

The beginnings of the USA branch of TCA concentrated on connecting with Turnbulls throughout the US using the Highland Games as a meeting place. Tent Hosts were established in key regions and annual meetings moved from one area to another, expanding friendships and acquiring new members. The first such meeting occurred on August 11, 1979 at the Rocky Mountain Highland Games in Golden, Colorado. Vella and Morris Turnbull were the first clan tent hosts. They continued to host a tent at the Golden games for many years to come. The 1979 games boasted that 29 members came from all parts of the US. From Dorothy’s second newsletter; “Our two tartans made their first US, public debut, at the games.” The tartans were well received by Turnbulls and other clan representatives.


1977 TCA Founder John F. Turnbull

turnbull johnJohn F.Turnbull, 1932-1982 - In 1978, he designed and created the Turnbull Dress and the Turnbull Hunting Tartans.The year was 1977 and the man was John F. Turnbull of Hawick, Scotland. John founded Turnbull Clan Association to reestablish a link with Turnbulls worldwide and their rich heritage. Working endlessly with his wife Myra as his personal assistant, the two wrote letters and addressed envelopes by hand, mailing to any Turnbull worldwide that they could find. They would sit in their living room and plan Turnbull events with fellow members and write to members. Then Myra would address envelope after envelope. Myra tells how she gave up her golf afternoon to work with John and promote the Clan.

John found that there was no official tartan for the clan Turnbull. Having studied design at University with an apprenticeship in the design of plaids, he decided to do something about that. John chose the main features of the Bruce and Douglas tartans to incorporate into the Turnbull tartan, both clans having an important part in the history of the Turnbulls. Because of John’s efforts, there are now Turnbull tartans widely recognized and officially registered with the Lord Lyon, King of Arms.

dress tartan hunting tartan
Turnbull Dress Tartan, designed by John F. Turnbull Turnbull Hunting Tartan, designed by John F. Turnbull

Listen to John being interviewed about TCA.

A clan lay dormant for hundreds of years, but because of the dream of one man, now hundreds have become aware of and interested in their heritage and beginnings. Countless friends have been made. TCA not only has beautiful modern registered tartans, but now can boast an official Coat of Arms. In addition, with a permanent monument in the Borders, the Turnbull name will once again be recognized as a strong and vital part of the Borders and beyond.

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