Last week, Ed Holliday shared a little about himself with the club.
Ed grew up in Clemson, South Carolina. His ancestors lived in upstate South Carolina before Clemson was established, so he had deep roots in the old south. While in high school, he saw the first African American student, Harvey Gantt, enroll in Clemson uneventfully and the first two African American students enroll in Daniel High. “I came to have a different perspective on these events."
He attended Clemson University, earning a Bachelors degree in History & secondary education. He then earned a Masters Degree from UGA, taking time off for basic training for Clemson US Army Reserve. He began his career in 1971 at Greenville High School and spent the first third of his career as a high school teacher and assistant principal. He then got elementary certification and transferred as assistant principal to a suburban school. In 1993 he became principal of Stone Elementary in downtown Greenville. Throughout his career, he had two major goals - to promote racial harmony and innovative teaching.
Ed joined North Greenville Rotary at the invitation of the superintendent who was a member. “I joined because the club was doing multi-year landscape projects on the school campus. I stayed because I had the opportunity to participate in community service, meet people from other professionals and market my school.”
Stone Elementary was an under-enrolled inner-city school the district had tried to close three times because of declining test scores, enrollment and aging facility, but the community fought to keep it open. During his second year he had the opportunity to propose an arts magnet theme. During his 23-year tenure he led it to one of the premiere schools in South Carolina and a model school for arts-integrated curriculum. “My career, like Rotary was about ‘having fun doing good.’”
In 2016 Ed retired and moved to Dunwoody to be near his grandchildren. “I joined Rotary Club of Dunwoody to get to know my new community and continue serving others.”