Howard Burnette Stroud Sr.
Howard Burnette Stroud Sr. (March 31, 1930 - March 30, 2007) was an influential African American educator and community leader born in Athens, Georgia. His leadership was instrumental in guiding the Clarke County School District through the nation's tense and historic school integration crisis in the wake of the 1954 Supreme Court of the United States' decision in Brown vs. Board of Education. He was an active leader and participant in numerous local and national civic organizations. As a member of the Mount Pleasant Baptist Church of Athens, he faithfully served as a Deacon, then Chairman of the Deacon Board. He also served as a board member of Athens Regional Medical Center for 20 years, presiding as Chairman for several of those years. To acknowledge his lifelong dedication to education and the commitment to the ideals of equality, Fourth Street School was renamed Howard B Stroud Elementary School in 2007. Mr. Stroud carried himself with the utmost dignity and compassion and lived according to the personal motto "There's nothing greater for me than to serve my fellow man. I feel compelled to make my community the best it can be."
Howard Burnette Stroud Sr. was born in Athens, Georgia, to the late George Edward and Emma Mae Flanigan Stroud. He was the eldest of their six children. His father was a respected local barber who worked on W. Broad St., east of Milledge Street in Downtown Athens. George later became an agent for the North Carolina Mutual Life Insurance Company and then a bus driver for the Clarke County School District. His mother Emma Stroud was a homemaker. She later worked for the Zeta Phi Beta sorority house on Prince Street at the University of Georgia. Howard B. Stroud Sr. is also the grandson of Rosenwald School Principal Edwin David Stroud, also an influential educator in the Athens area for whom the E.D. Stroud School was renamed.
After his honorable service in the United States Army as a medical and psychiatric technician, Mr. Stroud earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology from Moorehouse College in Atlanta (Morehouse Col, BA 1956) and taught in Clarke County Schools before attaining his Master’s Degree in Educational Administration at Atlanta University (Atlanta Univ, MA 1968). He was an active participant of such civic organizations as the Classic City Center Authority, the Athens Technical Institute Board of Directors, the East Athens Development Corporation, the Clarke County NAACP, Kappa Alpha Psi, the Morton Theatre Corporation, the Athens Symphony, and the Athens Area Retired Teachers Association.
His professional skills led him to serve various boards beyond his local community, including the National Association of Educators, the National Alliance of Black School Educators, the National Association of Middle School Principals, and the United Way of Northeast Georgia.
Howard B. Stroud Sr. passed away on March 30, 2007, in Athens, Georgia. Stroud was 77 years of age.