A Century of Leadership

Biographies of Kappa Delta Pi Presidents

Edited by:
O. L. Davis, University of Texas - Austin
Mindy Spearman, Clemson University

A volume in the series: Research in Curriculum and Instruction. Editor(s): Cheryl J. Craig, Texas A&M.

Published 2011

Kappa Delta Pi is an international honor society in Education founded in 1911. This book chronicles the leadership of Kappa Delta Pi across the past century through a collection of short life stories about the 32 individuals who were elected by members to lead the Society. Through their work with their fellow officers, they helped keep alive the flame that called attention to the importance of highly qualified teachers in American schools, in the main, teachers whose academic credentials were very strong.

These life stories attend to KDP presidents’ contributions to education, particularly with emphasis a) on high academic scholarship for educational professionals, e.g., teacher candidates, teachers at all levels, school administrators, college and university faculty members in education and in fields related to educational practice and knowledge; b) toward teacher candidates’ mindful learning in and the integration of liberal arts, education, and other fields of study; c) and in the support and fostering of scholarly endeavors, especially substantive research and creative developments in the educational processes of schooling – all or many related to the individual’s involvement in Kappa Delta Pi.

A number of elements of Kappa Delta Pi’s purposes and practices during its first century are illuminated in this book. Many others remain obscured, neglected, or unknown. Readers reasonably may discover keys to increased understanding and wonderment as they read and think about the lives of these former presidents, particularly about their contributions to the continuance and strengthening of the Society. One impressive key surely is evident. Their presidencies not only helped Kappa Delta Pi to continue to exist. They also fostered the fruitful creation of this honor society in education. And so also will those members and leaders who, succeeding these former presidents, enter confidently into Kappa Delta Pi’s second century.

Prologue: Continuing the Creation of our Future, O. L. Davis, Jr. and Mindy Spearman. W.W. Denton (1915-1917): Establishing a National Organization, Vanessa M. Villate. Frank E. Thompson (1917-1919): Expanding the Society, O. L. Davis, Jr. William C. Bagley (1919-1924): The Founder and Spirit of Kappa Delta Pi, Wesley Null. Thomas Cooke McCracken (1924-1948): Committed to the Profession of Teaching, Paula K. Greene. William McKinley Robinson (1948-1950): A Steward for Rural Education and Life, David Callejo Perez. Frank L. Wright (1950-1953): Leader Over New Horizons, Matthew D. Davis and Joshua M. Walehwa. Katherine Vickery (1953-1958): Female Visionary, Cheryl J. Craig. John J. Harton (1958-1964): Steady Hand at the Helm, O. L. Davis, Jr. Gerald H. Read (1964-1966): International Educator, Marcella L. Kysilka. Esther J. McKune (1966-1968): A Determined Woman, Marcella L. Kysilka. Wippert Arnot Stumpf (1968-1970): Turbulent Times, Ron Knorr. Lorrene Love Ort (1970-1972): Valuing Artistic Creativity and Academic Excellence in Educators, Sherri R. Colby. Frank E. Marsh, Jr. (1972-1974): Sowing Seeds for Future Growth, Mark Dietz. A. Keith Turkett (1974-1976): “Ideals are Power”, Stephanie van Hover, David Hicks and John Baran. Clementine Skinner (1976-1978): Educator, Historian, and Activist, Cynthia Hansberry Williams. Richard Louis Judd (1978-1980): Creating a Foundation for the Future, Elizabeth Smith Harrison. O. L. Davis, Jr. (1980-1982): Nurturing Scholarship and Honoring Excellence in Education, Ron W. Wilhelm. Jerry H. Robbins (1982-1984): Modernizing the Society, Brenda Wheat Whiteman. William Ross Palmer (1984-1986): Standing in Front of Lions, Antonio J. Castro and Sarah Shear. Marcella L. Kysilka (1986-1988): Leadership, Professionalism, and Society Management, Edmund C. Short. Bruce Jorgensen (1988-1990): Practical Leadership, Jared Stallones. John Petry (1990-1992): A Transformational Leader, Karon N. LeCompte. George L. Mehaffy (1992-1994): New Pathways, Stephen S. Masyada and Elizabeth A. Washington. Wallace D. Draper (1994-1996): Five New Plans, Larry J. Kelly. Morgan Simpson (1996-1998): Hope and Opportunity, Jamin Carson. Barbara D. Day (1998-2000): To Serve and To Lead, Sherry L. Field and Michelle Bauml. Janette Staton Rogers (2000-2002): Excellence In and Beyond the Classroom, Robin Robinson Kapavik. Blossom Snoyer Nissman (2002-2004): “Labels are for Jelly Jars, Not for Children”, Dana Haraway and Barbara Slater Stern. John Douglas Light (2004-2006): A Lifetime Educator, Janet Hammer and Patricia Wiese. Karen Nicholson (2006-2008): Valuing Contemporary Educators, Angela Eckhoff. Pamela Kramer Ertel (2008-2010): A Quiet Leader, Kelley M. King and Vivien Geneser. Nathan Bond (2010-2012): Journey Toward the Centennial Celebration, Sarah Mathews and Denisha Jones. About the Authors.