Longtime faculty member and current English teacher Mr. David Walton has received the “FPD Service Award,” which recognizes an individual with a strong connection to FPD. Molly Pearson, a member of FPD’s class of 1987, has received the “Distinguished Alumni Award,” which honors an alumnus or alumna who has made an exceptional mark on his or her community through vocation or service.
The 2012-13 school year marks the 50th year in education for Walton. Walton grew up in Macon and attended Bellevue Elementary, Lanier Junior and Lanier Senior High School. Walton graduated in 1959 and enrolled at Mercer University, where he received his degree in 1963.
That same summer, Walton began his first year as a teacher in the Bibb County School System as a seventh grade teacher. He says in those days the elementary school consisted of grades 1-7. Walton’s first class was at Riley School, and it contained 41 students in a self-contained classroom. Walton says, by the grace of God and with the support of a wonderful principal, he completed his first year and was happy to sign a second contract in Bibb County. He still has all 50 contracts that he has signed--8 from Bibb County and now 42 at FPD. Additionally he received his master’s degree from Georgia College in Milledgeville and an administrative certificate from the University of Georgia.
His first principal at Riley was Mr. Russell Floyd, who later left the Bibb System and came to First Presbyterian Day School in 1970 to serve as Assistant Headmaster and Latin teacher. In the spring of the 1970-1971 school year, Mr. Floyd called Walton from FPD and encouraged him to apply for a 7th grade teaching position at the school. After much prayerful thought, Walton interviewed with Mr. Henry Middlebrooks for that position.
Walton’s first year was 1971-1972 (the second year of our school). He taught full time for his first 10 years--teaching English in grades 7 and 8; however, he has taught English 9 and English 11 over the years as well.
At the end of the 1980-1981 school year, Mr. Floyd retired and Walton was named Assistant Headmaster/Principal of the Elementary School. He served as principal for the next 21 years and from the early 1970s until 2002 he served as the school's Athletic Business Manager.
From 2002 until today, Walton has served as Chair of the English Department. In 2002, Mrs. Patti Fuchs, longtime teacher at FPD, retired. At that time Walton asked current FPD Headmaster Mr. Gregg Thompson to allow him to leave his position as principal and teach the classes that Fuchs taught. Mr. Thompson, along with the Board's approval, allowed him to make that move.
Walton will have spent 21 of the last 42 years as a classroom teacher and 21 years as an administrator.
Walton says he appreciates so much the support over the past 49 years from Mr. Russell Floyd and Mr. Henry Middlebrooks, and from Mr. Gregg Thompson over the past 15 years.
What a grand ride it has been for Mr. Walton! He will retire at the end of the 2012-13 school year.