Ronald McCurdy

Ron McCurdy publishes essay in Wall Street Journal

USC Thornton Professor of Jazz Studies Ron McCurdy recently penned a fantastic essay on his father, Charles M. McCurdy, in the Wall Street Journal. Charles M. McCurdy was the principal of a mostly black high school in the rural town of Belle Glade, Florida for 15 years in the 1950s and 1960s. Although it was after the Civil Rights Act, the city remained segregated. “My father saw it as his personal challenge to encourage education in Belle Glade,” wrote Ron McCurdy. “He held himself to be a role model and required his teachers to do the same.”

After losing his job as principal when the city integrated schools in 1970, Charles M. McCurdy won a lawsuit against the school board, ultimately getting reinstated in 1974. “It wasn’t until many years later,” said Ron McCurdy, “that I realized how much bravery, resilience and vulnerability my father had exhibited in pursuing his lawsuit.”

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