Thursday, August 7, 2014

Gloria Runyon - July 11, 2014

Gloria Runyon's family have lived in Vienna, Virginia, as she puts it, since "before it became Vienna." Her roots in the town grow at least as far back as her great-grandfather, a Cherokee Indian, who built the home in which she still lives. Gloria Runyon's family has always been deeply involved in the Vienna community, and her life and work is no exception.

Growing up in Vienna, Gloria Runyon belonged to the First Baptist Church and a local bible study group, and attended Louise Archer Elementary School and Luther P. Jackson High School in Fairfax County, just as Madison High School began to integrate. After graduating as valedictorian of her class, Runyon enrolled in Howard University, where she was active in her sorority and engaged with the school's political climate. She graduated in 1965.

As the former president of the Malcolm-Windover Heights Civic Association in Vienna, Runyon helped to develop the Sarah Walker Mercer Park. In 2014, she retired from a near 40-year tenure at the Georgetown Day School, where she was first acted as a teacher, then a math coordinator, then as lower School principal. She discusses her work at Georgetown Day School in some detail in this interview. Runyon spent her final year before her retirement as the Diversity Coordinator.


Family Roots in Vienna

Personal and Community Involvement in Vienna

Louise Archer Elementary School, Vienna Landscape

Youth in Vienna

Old Friends, Bible School, Experience of Segregation

Friends Integrating Madison High School

Recreation, Family Time

Family History, Told with Photographs

Taking Students to Protest South African Apartheid

Political Climate at Howard University, Family Diversity

Career Before Teaching at Georgetown Day School

Mixed Race Identities

Initiatives as Diversity Coordinator at Georgetown Day School

Thoughts on Small-Town Vienna

Memories of Attending Louise Archer Elementary School

Early Distaste for Studying History

Revisiting Louise Archer Elementary School

Remembering Various Teachers at Louise Archer Elementary School

Traveling to Various Events During High School

Memories of Luther P. Jackson High School

Memories of Howard University

Concerts at Howard Theater

All interviews by Sophie Abramowitz