The College of Education at East Carolina University held its 19th Annual Educators Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony on Saturday, October 28, 2017.
Eighteen educators and education advocates were recognized during an event that raised over $27,000 for student scholarships. This year’s inductees included retired Moore County Schools educator and principal, Michael Donnell of West End, NC.
Michael Donnell or “Mr. D” as he is affectionately known by his former students, earned his Bachelor of Science in Intermediate Education from ECU in 1973 and his Master of Arts in Administration and Supervision from Fayetteville State University in 1983.
His career began at South Greenville Elementary in Pitt County and then continued at High Falls Elementary in Moore County. Mr. D took a teaching position at West End Elementary School in Moore County in 1978 and retired in 2002 as Principal. He was named Moore County Teacher of the Year in 1982 and Principal of the Year in 2000. He is currently serving his Alma Mater as Chair-Elect of the ECU College of Education’s Professional Advisory Board.
Mr. D is known for his sign language “I love you” which he waved to everyone throughout the day and to his buses as they left each afternoon. He is more than a great teacher, coach, and principal. Mr. D is a beloved mentor, role model, counselor and father figure to generations of his West End Elementary students. Mr. D was sponsored for the Educator’s Hall of Fame by his daughter Megan D. Zearfoss of Pinehurst, NC along with many family members, friends, former students, and co-workers. His plaque on the Educators Hall of Fame wall at ECU reads: “Students don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.”
Feature photo: Michael Donnell (center) receiving an award from College of Education Dean, Dr. Grant Hayes (right) and Provost & Senior Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs, Dr. Ron Mitchelson (left).