Retired Johnston County Public Schools Superintendent Dr. H. Edward Croom was honored at a special portrait unveiling ceremony on Tuesday.
Croom’s portrait joined those of previous superintendents that are located in the Hall of History in the Evander S. Simpson Building in Smithfield.
“It’s good to be back and to be in a situation where you’re being recognized,” said Croom. “This is sort of a final farewell.”
Members of the Johnston County Board of Education, NC Representative Donna White, Johnston County Manager Rick Hester, Johnston County Board of Commissioners Chairman Jeff Carver, Johnston County Commissioner Keith Branch, Johnston County Register of Deeds Craig Olive, Johnston Community College President Dr. David Johnson, current Superintendent Dr. Ross Renfrow, Croom’s family, staff members, and community members were all in attendance.
During the ceremony Croom had the opportunity to reflect on his tenure at Johnston County Public Schools and to fellowship with former colleagues.
“When you’re superintendent you’re leading a large organization. It’s the largest organization in Johnston County,” said Croom. “It’s very stressful, but what made it work was having people around you that you enjoy working with.”
Croom said that he enjoyed knowing he is part of Johnston County history, but he is happier to know that he left a legacy.
“It’s nice to have your picture up, but it’s better to know that you’ve had a lasting impact on the life of a child,” said Croom.
Following the ceremony he took time to share a few words of advice for leaders in education.
“Always do what you know is right,” said Croom. “A lot of the time it’s not the popular decision, but if you always do what you know is right by God’s instruction and by your heart, you’ll be okay.”