Flora Davis Crittenden

Flora Davis Crittenden was born in August of 1924. She is a native of Brooklyn, New York and moved to Hampton Roads as a young girl. She graduated from the former Huntington High School in Newport News, received her undergraduate degree from Virginia State University, and earned her Master of Science degree from Indiana University. She later continued her education with post-graduate study in advanced Guidance Theory at the University of Louisville. Crittenden worked for thirty-two years in the Newport News Public Schools. During this time, she fulfilled the duties of classroom teacher, extracurricular activity sponsor, department head, guidance counselor, and guidance director.

In 1986, Crittenden entered public office, serving first on the Newport News City Council before serving as a delegate to the General Assembly. Crittenden has also been active in the NAACP (as both a life member and past president), the Trinity Baptist Church, and numerous civic organizations.

For her tireless contributions to the community, Crittenden has received numerous awards. Among the most prestigious of these was the renaming of George Washington Carver High School in Newport News in her honor. Now known as the Flora D. Crittenden Middle School, the school functions as a magnet school for science and mathematics. She was also named by the Daily Press as one of the top ten most influential women on the Peninsula. In 2000, she was elected president by her colleagues and became the first black woman to chair the board. She is still active in the community and, although she does not believe that racism is dead, she is hopeful for the future of diversity.

-Interview and biographical information recorded in 2012.