OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – Joyce Henderson of Oklahoma City and Ray Henson of Durant are the newest educators being honored at the Oklahoma Educators Hall of Fame. They are part of the 36th class of Hall of Fame Honorees.

Joyce Henderson is a rural education champion and dedicated to what she does. She spent 37 years as an educator. For most of her career, she was a principal at various Oklahoma City High Schools, including Emerson, Classen (original), Northeast and Star Spencer.

Henderson obtained a bachelor’s degree from Langston University in 1968, a master’s degree from the University of Central Oklahoma in 1972 and a secondary school administration certificate from the University of Oklahoma in 1973.

Joyce Henderson. Image courtesy Oklahoma State School Boards Association.

Her honors include induction into the Oklahoma City Public Schools Foundation Wall of Fame, Oklahoma African American Educators Hall of Fame, John F. Kennedy Foundation’s Performing Arts Administrator Award, Langston University Education Hall of Fame, the Women of Color Expo Educator of the Year, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Black History Award Recipient, St. John CME Church’s Outstanding Black Woman Award and the church’s Minister of Music Emeritus and pianist.

Ray Henson has a 53-year education career. Henson received the Associate of Science from Eastern in 1964, the Bachelor of Science from Northeastern Oklahoma State University in 1966, the Master of Science in School Administration from Tulsa University in 1970 and his professional certificate in superintendent studies from the University of Oklahoma in 1972.

Henson worked as a science teacher in Kinta, the high school basketball coach for Glenpool, and the Talihina Public Schools superintendent.

Ray Henson. Image courtesy Oklahoma State School Boards Association.

Henson served as president of the National Board of North Central Association, Talihina Lions Club, the Talihina Chamber of Commerce, Talihina Housing Authority, and served on the boards of the Organization of Rural Oklahoma Schools, as well as the Oklahoma Secondary Schools Activity Association and the National Indian Impact Aid Association.

Henson has received honors throughout his career include induction into the Eastern Oklahoma State College Alumni Hall of Fame in 2004 and receiving the University of Oklahoma Career Educator Award in 2004.

“After 50-plus years of serving schools and making a positive impact on each one, he also impacted communities in which he served. Becoming involved in local organizations such as the chamber of commerce and Lions Club showed his total commitment to not only the school but the community,” said Perry Willis, retired executive director of the Organization of Rural Oklahoma Schools.

Collectively, both inductees dedicated 80 years to working for education. They were honored for their hard work and dedication in this years Oklahoma Educators Hall of Fame.