HPS honorees have century-plus experience

By Ken McLemore/Hope Public Schools, 09/14/21 7:17 AM

HOPE – There are 167 years of educational excellence represented among the five honorees to be inducted into the 2021 Class of the Hope Public Schools Educator Hall of Fame here Friday night.

Honorees Harrel Dickerson, Melba Hall, Mary R. Moses, Margaret Moss and Johnny Turner will be recognized during a “come and go” reception from 1-2:30 p.m. Friday in the rotunda of Hempstead Hall on the University of Arkansas-Hope campus. They will be formally inducted into the Hope Public Schools Educator Hall of Fame in ceremonies at 6:30 p.m. at Hammons Stadium on the Hope High School campus, prior to the Hope-Prescott football game.

Should inclement weather preclude induction ceremonies at Hammons Stadium, the awards will be presented during the reception.

Among the five honorees, former Bobcat Head Football Coach Johnny Turner has the longest tenure at 38 years, beginning as a classroom teacher and progressing through the athletics coaching ranks to become AAAA Southwest Coach of the Year in 2005. The late Melba Hall also represents athletics excellence during a 34-year career that saw the HHS Girls’ Basketball program win numerous conference titles, state play-off appearances and induction into the Arkansas Coaches Hall of Fame.

Honoree Margaret Moss helped build the library programs at Clinton Primary School and Yerger Middle School after 16 years as a classroom teacher at Beryl Henry Elementary School, while Mary R. Moses taught multiple generations of Hope students 11th grade English for 29 years, and Harrel Dickerson oversaw the growth of the HPS campuses and transportation fleet for 14 years after 15 years teaching World History and Western Civilization and serving as assistant principal and principal at two campuses.

Nominations were solicited from the community, from professional education organizations and from education-related organizations of former HPSD educators with 10 years or more of active service as an HPSD educator, administrator or support professional, inclusive of posthumous nominations.

The honorees will comprise the fourth class of the HPSD Educator Hall of Fame since the inaugural class was selected during the Hempstead County Bicentennial year in 2018.