HOPE – Joan Crowder got a Hope Academy of Public Service bench last week.
Crowder ended her 32-year career in public education Sept. 30 with the traditional retirement gift from HAPS loaded in the back of her SUV.
“And, just like that… it’s over,” she quipped.
Crowder graduated from Hope High School in 1981, and she stayed close to home thereafter. She took her BSE at Ouachita Baptist University in Arkadelphia in 1985, and completed a M.Ed. at Henderson State University, across the street in Arkadelphia, in 1989. Thereafter, Crowder married husband Garry, after starting her classroom teaching career in Texarkana in 1985.
Meanwhile, their son, Preston, who is now a senior at OBU, was born.
Crowder later completed the bulk of her classroom teaching career in Arkadelphia, where Garry coached the OBU Women’s Basketball Team from 1995 to 2019.
Crowder split her service across early grades, teaching one year of fifth grade, two years of third grade, and seven years of sixth grade, science and literacy.
Afterward, she became an instructional facilitator for nine years; then, in 2018, Crowder became Public Service Curriculum Coordinator at HAPS.
“I’ve had so much fun, getting out in the community and giving back to the community I grew up in,” Crowder said.
After 32 years, she admitted to having no particular plans for the future; perhaps, as Crowder noted, to adjust to the idea of having some free time for a change… to use her new bench.