Coming Home

Published 11:17 am Tuesday, September 20, 2016

WINTON – They came home….to Winton.

The Winton Historical Association (WHA) held a Homecoming event Saturday at the Winton Baptist Church Fellowship Hall on Main Street where hundreds of current and former residents of Hertford County’s oldest town came together to celebrate the its rich history and relive old times.

In addition to renewing old friendships with fond memories of growing up in Winton, those in attendance were treated cards for sale, a silent auction of Winton artifacts, and books for sale by Winton authors Ben Watford and the day’s featured speaker, Dr. Dudley Flood – both graduates of C.S. Brown.

Flood was born and reared in Winton, but has lived in Raleigh area since about 1970.

Flood was a born educator, beginning his career as a teacher of math, science and English at the eighth grade level. He later taught high school social studies and coached high school basketball and football.

He served for three years as principal of a school covering grades 1 – 12 before joining the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction as a specialist in school desegregation and race relations.

Flood entertained the audience with many humorous tales from his life in his days in Winton.

He said he grew up “on the hill” in Winton and went to the river every day.

He attended C.S. Brown back when academic contests where held in Elizabeth City, which C.S. Brown won so many times they stopped having them.

He said the educational ethos was so strong at C.S. Brown he compared it favorably to any school in the nation.

He said he took standardized tests from California during his school days about what they thought a good student needed to know, he made up a test for them about what good student should know, with questions such as, “how many teats a nanny goat has?” [two]; “how many does a cow have?” [three] and “what is a sand lug” [lowest leaves on a tobacco plant].

These were questions any teen from this area had to know back then. They didn’t know in California.

“Everybody taught everybody, back then. It had nothing to do with your station in life or your race,” Flood said. “You couldn’t leave here inept. You had to have some capacity, some capability.”

Winton Mayor Tiffany Lewis presented him the key to the city He thanked her and quipped it wouldn’t have done him any good when he lived in Winton because nobody locked their doors.

The Historical Association gave him basket of goodies – jellies, jams, honey, peanuts, etc. – produced in Hertford County.

During his 21 years of service with the Department of Public Instruction, Flood earned promotions first to Assistant and then Associate State Superintendent. He is credited as having successfully integrating North Carolina schools, avoiding many of the problems other states had.

After retiring from Public Instruction on December 31, 1990, he served for 5 years and 3 months as Executive Director of the North Carolina Association of School Administrators.

Since April 1996, he has been a lecturer and consultant to groups throughout the country and abroad.

Flood has been a Visiting Professor at Meredith College and at the University of North Carolina at Wilmington, and has taught in the Principals Executive Program at UNC-CH.

He earned the bachelors degree from North Carolina Central University, the master’s degree in educational administration from East Carolina University and the doctorate degree in the same field from Duke University. He has studied further at Elizabeth City State University, UNC-CH and Hampton University.

Flood has spoken in all 100 of North Carolina’s counties. Also, he has spoken or conducted workshops in 48 of the 50 United States, in Bermuda, the District of Columbia, Canada, and Germany. His writings have been published in more than 25 journals and he has authored three books.

He has received more than 350 awards for civic service. He has been presented the Order of the Longleaf Pine Award (North Carolina’s highest civic award), by three different Governors: James G. Martin James B. Hunt, Jr., and Mike Easley.

He has received the Outstanding Alumni Award from both NC Central and ECU, and has received the Doctorate of Humane Letters from both NC Central and the UNC-Asheville.

Flood served for 12 years on the Board of Governors of the University of North Carolina.