The Story of IEHOF

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February 20, 2013

[/fusion_text][/two_fifth][three_fifth last=”yes” class=”” id=””][title size=”2″ content_align=”left” style_type=”single” sep_color=”” class=”” id=””]The Story of the International Educators’ Hall of Fame[/title][fusion_text]It was around February 25, 1986, I had recently arrived in Sacramento, CA from Nigeria, West Africa where my husband, children, and I had been living since 1975. I obtained a job as a research specialist in the Administrative and Evaluation Services Department in the Sacramento Unified School District (SCUSD).

Among my first assignments was to design and administer a survey to find out what parents knew and felt about district programs, schools and school environment. I also surveyed students in grades 3-12, staff members, and community and business organizations.

It was a daunting and highly successful assignment. During the process, I got a chance to know the SCUSD community very well. One segment of the community that impressed me was the retired educators living in Sacramento; they had very interesting backgrounds as: “firsts,” “pioneers,” “trailblazers,” “movers-and-shakers,” and change agents.

In about 1990, I, with students from the 501(C)(3) nonprofit organization (Youth-on-the-Move, Inc., I co-founded in Sacramento, attended a Sports Hall of Fame event at Rancho Arroyo Sports Complex organized by a friend, Rick Warren. I was impressed with the lives of the Inductees. And, the youths were impressed. It was wonderful.

As I stood in the back of the banquet hall observing, I thought “teachers/educators need to be honored and feted in like manner–after all, from my survey experience, the teachers I met were just as wonderful – and besides, it was teachers (coaches) who trained everyone of the athletes being inducted that night.” I was obsessed with the idea of an “Educators’ Hall of Fame” to honor the magnificent teachers/administrators I had met while getting acquainted in the SCUSD.

I shared my new dream with many. One early morning at Kinko’s on J Street in Sacramento, I saw Dr. Kathryn Favors, a school administrator. I eagerly shared by idea with her about creating an Educators’ Hall of Fame. She listened and right away affirmed my idea and volunteered to chair the first committee that would make the event happen. She kept her promise; thus was the beginning of first 12 educators to be inducted into the Youth-on-the-Move (YOMI) African American Educators’ Hall of Fame in Sacramento California, 1992-1993. Soon the name would change to (YOMI) African American Multi-Cultural Educators Hall of Fame, then to(YOMI) Multi-cultural Educators Hall of Fame, and finally to (YOMI) International Educators’ Hall of Fame.

The biographical sketches of the “First Twelve” comprise a book that is registered with the Library of Congress with its own (ISBN) number– as the First book about Hall of Fame Educators. The Educators’ Hall of Fame concept caught fire and spread to other cities, states and countries. Today, February 2013, our 20th Anniversary, there are over 500 inductees from 20 countries —and over 13 biographical books about the incredible lives of the educator inductees.[/fusion_text][/three_fifth]