School of Education Hall of Fame Inductees

2017 Education Hall of Fame Inductees

Jaqueline Lowry Caudill

For more than three decades, Jacqueline Lowry Caudill (1926 – 2014) reached generations of students as an educator at Elizabeth School in Shelby, N.C. She earned an undergraduate degree from Appalachian State Teachers College (now Appalachian State University). A native of Jefferson, S.C., Jacqueline married Wayne Jack Caudill, and the couple had two sons. They moved to Shelby in 1953 and her career as an educator continued for nearly 33 years. A member of First Baptist Church of Shelby and the Alpha Delta Kappa sorority for female educators, Caudill was a devoted wife and mother who always displayed a passion for teaching. In 1999, she moved to Durham, N.C., and resided at Croasdaile Village Retirement Community until her death in 2014.

Wayne Jack Caudill

Born in 1923 in Wilkesboro, N.C., Wayne Jack Caudill was a veteran of World War II who later earned several degrees in education. He held an undergraduate degree in education from Appalachian State Teachers College (now Appalachian State University). He earned master’s degrees from George Peabody College (now part of Vanderbilt University) and the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. He married Jacqueline Lowry in 1949 (see info above). After moving to Shelby in 1953, he spent two years as principal of Shelby Junior High School from 1953 to 1954. From 1955 to 1970, he served as principal of Shelby High School, during which time the present campus was designed and constructed. Active in his church and community prior to his death in 1982, he modeled the importance of maintaining a lifelong commitment to learning.

Dr. W. Lowry Caudill

Dr. Walter Lowry Caudill grew up in Shelby, N.C., and earned a bachelor’s degree in chemistry from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC-CH). He attended Indiana University where he received a doctorate in Analytical Chemistry. Upon graduation, he became a research scientist at Baxter-Travenol, and eventually developed a successful career in pharmaceutical research. He co-founded Magellan Laboratories, which was later acquired by Cardinal Health. In 2008, he received the Distinguished Alumnus Award from UNC-CH and was inducted into the Order of the Golden Fleece by the University. He is an active member on the UNC-CH Board of Trustees and is a leader in international missions through his church. Caudill values entrepreneurship and community service.

Louise Brown Blanton

An innovative educator and principal, Louise Brown Blanton (1919 – 1990) of Lattimore, N.C., is remembered for her staunch advocacy in the field of elementary education, particularly for at-risk and struggling students. She attended Gardner-Webb and Asheville Normal Teacher’s College (Asheville, N.C.) and later earned a master’s degree at UNC-Chapel Hill. For 33 years, she served in Raleigh, N.C., where she established open, multi-age classrooms and a personalized education model. In 1967, she became principal of Boylan Heights Elementary, a small neighborhood school where she made a tremendous difference for both students and staff. She was the kind of leader who made sure every child who needed extra assistance received it and cared for them as if they were her own children. She put original ideas about pedagogy into practice and became an expert in learning centers and individualized instruction. Today, contemporary educators frequently implement her effective classroom learning strategies.

2016 Education Hall of Fame Inductees

Walter Dalton

Isothermal Community College President Walter Dalton—former N.C. Lieutenant Governor—has worked tirelessly to improve educational opportunities in North Carolina. A native of Rutherford County, N.C., Dalton is committed to aligning education and training efforts to meet modern workforce needs both within the region and beyond.

Dr. Collette Deviney

For decades, Dr. Collette Deviney has served students, parents, and citizens of Cleveland County, N.C., as a beloved administrator and community volunteer. As the recipient of several community awards for service, Deviney continues to invest in area educational endeavors with a spirit of active involvement and service.

Richard “Stick” Williams

Richard “Stick” Williams of Charlotte, N.C., launched Project LIFT—a five-year effort to boost graduation rates in Charlotte-Mecklenburg schools. As president of the Duke Energy Foundation, Williams is heavily involved in educational and philanthropic efforts throughout his community.

2016 Education Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony Photos

2015 Education Hall of Fame Inductees

Dr. George Litton

Dr. George Litton, former head football coach at Gardner-Webb, served the Cleveland County, N.C., community for dozens of years as a school administrator and longtime principal at Crest High School. He later became a longtime member and chairman of the Cleveland County Board of Education. He was the recipient of the Raleigh Dingman Award for Most Outstanding School Board Member in 2009 and was an active member of the Communities in Schools Board of Directors and the Cleveland Community College Board of Visitors.

Hoyt Q. Bailey

Hoyt Q. Bailey founded the Boys and Girls Club of Cleveland County and was a former chairman of the Cleveland County Board of Education. He received the Raleigh Dingman Most Outstanding School Board Member award in 1995. He served as a former trustee at Gardner-Webb and received an honorary doctorate from the University in 1997. His leadership as a board member of the Dover Foundation, started by his wife’s family—owners of Dover Mill in Shelby—has been instrumental in providing thousands of dollars in college scholarships to high school students. The board has also supported countless other educational endeavors in Cleveland County.

Ezra Bridges

Ezra Bridges (1905-2010) was a devoted educator who tirelessly served the Cleveland County community in immeasurable ways. She worked for former North Carolina Governor Oliver Max Gardner and his wife, Fay Webb-Gardner, the namesakes of Gardner-Webb University. An African-American woman, Bridges attended Scotia Seminary for teachers and taught for 46 years in the Shelby schools, many of those years at the segregated Cleveland School. A lifelong learner, Bridges earned a bachelor’s degree from Hampton Institute in Virginia in 1942 and a master’s from Columbia University in New York in 1946.

2015 Education Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony Photos