ROANOKE RAPIDS – Rodney Pierce, the 8th Grade Social Studies and Civics & Economics teacher at William R. Davie Middle STEM Academy, was presented with the “M.L.K. Dream Keeper” Award at the Roanoke Valley SCLC’s Fourth Annual Gala last week at the Dr. Ervin V. Griffin Centre at Halifax Community College in Weldon.
Pierce received the honor due to his research into local Black history in Halifax County, research that led the local SCLC chapter to recognize Sarah Keys Evans with the “Presidential Drum Major for Justice” at last year’s Third Annual Gala. Evans, then a private in the Women’s Army Corps, was arrested in August 1952 in Roanoke Rapids for refusing to give up her seat on a bus to a White Marine. The incident led to the landmark case Keys v. Carolina Coach Company, in which the Interstate Commerce Commission banned the segregation of Black passengers traveling across state lines.
Pierce has received two fellowships to UNC-Chapel Hill over the past two summers and was named one of the district’s two Most Outstanding Beginning Teachers for the 2017-18 academic year. He serves as Davie’s Social Studies Content Area Lead and Student Government Association adviser. He is also on the district’s Public Relations Committee.
In compliance with Federal Law, Halifax County Schools administers all education programs, employment activities and admissions without discrimination against any person on the basis of gender, race, color, religion, national origin, age or disability.