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Aderhold, Omer Clyde

Noted educator Omer Clyde Aderhold was born in Lavonia, Georgia on November 7, 1899. He attended the University of Georgia, obtaining a bachelor’s degree in 1923, subsequently serving as a teacher, principal, and superintendent of the nearby Jackson County school system. He returned to the University of Georgia to pursue a master’s degree, which he earned in 1930. Prior to graduation, he joined the faculty of the University of Georgia as an associate professor. Subsequently, Aderhold earned his doctorate from Ohio State University in 1938. Returning to the University of Georgia, he eventually becoming dean of the College of Education in 1945. Five years later, Aderhold was named sixteenth president of the University of Georgia - a position he would hold until his retirement in 1967. Aderhold’s accomplishments as University of Georgia president were many. He was influential in persuading the legislature to fund the Minimum Foundation Program for Education in Georgia, designed to finance Georgia public education on a continuing basis. At the University, Aderhold’s tenure witnessed construction of a new science center, a research park, the Georgia Center for Continuing Education, additions to Stanford football stadium, a new athletic coliseum, and a golf course. Off campus, a 4-H conference center was built at Rock Eagle. Library holdings increased from 250,000 volumes to almost one million. Student enrollment more than doubled; the number of doctorate degrees conferred annually rose from none to 132; the number of master’s degrees increased from 176 to over 500. Equally impressive was Aderhold’s strong leadership through court ordered integration in 1961, in which he made sure the law was upheld in a comparatively peaceful manner. Aderhold remained active after retirement, serving as an officer or advisor on many academic committees and commissions. After his death in Athens on July 4, 1969, the University named the new home of the College of Education - Aderhold Hall - in his honor. He is buried in Oconee Hill Cemetery adjacent to the UGA campus.

Aderhold, Omer Clyde View large image

Source: Hargrett Rare Book and Manuscript Library, University of Georgia Libraries