The Boys, Girls, Adults Community Development Center recently held its annual board banquet. Approximately 100 people attended including some distinguished Marvell citizens –  Marty McKissic, Lena Walker, Rose Tate, Ruby Murrow and Willie Spriggs.

 

The Boys, Girls, Adults Community Development Center recently held its annual board banquet. Approximately 100 people attended including some distinguished Marvell citizens –  Marty McKissic, Lena Walker, Rose Tate, Ruby Murrow and Willie Spriggs.
The keynote speaker was Dr. Tracy Dunbar, interim chair of the Department of Agriculture at the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff. Dunbar is a native of Marvell, having graduated from Marvell High School in 1984.  She studied at the UAPB, receiving a bachelor’s degree in science, majoring in agriculture economics in 1988. She obtained a master’s degree in agriculture economics from Penn State University. She later received her doctorate in resource development from Michigan State University in 1997. In 2009, Dunbar was appointed interim chair of the UAPB Department of Agriculture and associate professor of agriculture economics.   
In honor of the first African-American superintendent of the Marvell School District, Ulicous Reed, BGACDC created the Trailblazer Award. Reed is a native of the Gumm Bottom community. He graduated from the old M. M. Tate High School and studied at Arkansas AM&N College, now UAPB. He received a bachelor’s degree in science, majoring in horticulture and chemistry. He obtained a master’s degree in biology from the University of Central Arkansas and later another master’s degree in secondary administration from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock.  He studied at the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville, Arkansas State University at Jonesboro and Emporia University in Kansas.
 In 1967, Mr. Reed began teaching at Marvell High School and he remained on that faculty for 22 years. For the last 17 of those years he served as coordinator and teacher for the Marvell adult education program. 
In 1989, Reed became Marvell High School principal. He was Marvell High School Teacher of the Year and was nominated as Arkansas Teacher of the Year. After two years, the Marvell School Board appointed him superintendent. He would hold that job for 19 years, during which time he kept the schools stable and on a steady course through severe economic times, budget shortfalls, harsh new federal and state demands on schools and, finally, consolidation.
Reed retired from the Marvell-Elaine School District in 2010.
This summer, when the state Board of Education took over Helena-West Helena Schools, Reed was asked to help save the district. He is the district’s chief operations officer.