Ellis inducted into the NCAE Educational Hall of Fame

Rodney N. Ellis Sr.

Ellis inducted into the NCAE Educational Hall of Fame
April 06
05:10 2017


The North Carolina Association of Educators (NCAE) inducted Rodney N. Ellis Sr., former NCAE president from Forsyth County, into its Educational Hall of Fame. Each year, NCAE names an educator or staff member posthumously to the Hall of Fame in recognition of an outstanding career in public education or service to the Association.

In addition to the Hall of Fame Induction, Ellis received posthumously the Order of the Long Leaf Pine, which is among the most prestigious awards presented by the governor of North Carolina. It is awarded to persons for exemplary service to the State of North Carolina and their communities that is above and beyond the call of duty and which has made a significant impact and strengthened North Carolina. Some notable recipients of the Order of the Long Leaf Pine include Maya Angelou, Rev. William Barber II, Andy Griffith, and Charles Kuralt.

The dream to become an educator began for Ellis while a student at Winston-Salem State University, where he served as president of the Student NCAE. Once in the classroom, he served as a building representative, as vice president of the Forsyth County Association of Educators (FCAE), and as president for two terms. A life-long learner and someone who excelled in everything he did, Ellis ran for and was elected to the NCAE Board of Directors. He then ran for NCAE vice president, serving two terms (2008-2012), and won the seat of NCAE president, serving from 2012-2016.

A native of Mocksville, N.C., Ellis was the oldest of five siblings. As a student educated in public schools, he loved English and social studies, and credited his eighth-grade health and physical education teacher with piquing his interest in teaching. He described him as “a mentor and an inspiration.”

extensively for his work as an educator and community leader during his career. He was twice voted as Middle School Teacher of the Year while still in the classroom. In 2010, his alma mater Winston-Salem State University bestowed upon him the Alumni Achiever Award for the School of Education and Human Performance. A member of Phi Beta Sigma

Fraternity Inc., he was honored by the organization with the Delta Sigma Chapter President’s

Officer Appreciation Award, the Spirit of Sigma Award, The Centennial Legacy Award, and the Man of the Year Award.

After leaving the NCAE presidency, Ellis returned to Winston-Salem to teach at Philo-Middle School in Winston-Salem. The school recently named a classroom in his honor, which is now occupied by his daughter and teacher Gabrielle Ellis. “It’s unique that I’m able to be right in his classroom, doing something that was important to him,” she said. “I know he’d be proud.”

Ellis was married to wife and best friend Lisa for 23 years. His legacy will live on through the couple’s five children.

A special presentation was made at the NCAE Convention and Representative Assembly in Raleigh on Saturday, March 25, to recognize Ellis. His family was present to accept the awards, which were presented by NCAE President Mark Jewell.

NCAE is the state’s largest education advocacy organization for public school employees and rep-resents active, retired, and student members.

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