Rotary Club of Faribault

Posted by Laura Bock

Civil Rights- 1970's

     On Wednesday October 3, 2018 we heard from Dr. Barry Schaffer, specifically, about his time with the Alabama Desegregation Center.
     Dr. Schaffer is the husband of Faribault Rotarian Anne Marie Leland. His hobbies include coaching and playing softball, visiting the Boundary Waters, Bass Fishing Archery Hunting and Pickle ball. Dr. Schaffer is a Vietnam Vet (thank you for your service) and holds many degrees, a BS in Environmental Science, and MA in Science, an Education Doctorate in Educational Administration. We had a brief civil rights history lesson, then we learned more about desegregation. 
Dr. Shaffer’s first professional job was with the Alabama Desegregation Assistance Center in 1972 to 1975.  He was employed by the University South Alabama. When he began his career, there were 8 staff.
The process worked something like this: After black parents in a school district won a civil suit, Judges would order for school board members in the district to resign, or face a $1000.00 a day fine. Dr. Schaffer and company would be sent to the district to basically take over an extended stay motel and go to work, starting first with the reappointment of a new school board, and superintendent. 
     The teams focus as on transportation, curriculum, professional development, community relations, school finances, academics and student activities. Barry's roll was in athletics, student government, social events, year books, graduations, etc... Barry conducted a lot of sensitivity and leadership training. He had the opportunity to interview the students an appoint emerging leaders to student government and other leadership rolls. 
     Thank you for presenting and explaining to us in detail how this all worked. We look forward to seeing your smiling face again soon!