MRS. MARGUERITE FRIEND CHRISTIAN
2005 MMHMF Honoree
Mrs. Marguerite F. Christian, a native of Chesterfield County, Virginia, began her formal academic training in the Kingsland Elementary School, subsequently graduating from Peabody High School in Petersburg, Virginia. She earned both B.S. and M.S. degrees from Virginia State University and continued post-graduate studies in supervision at Tuskegee Institute, Tuskegee, Alabama amd William and Mary College in Williamsburg, Virginia.
Mrs. Christian began pursuit of a teaching career in Fluvanna County, Virginia in 1935. She later taught at Hickory Hill School in Chesterfield County until 1948 when she was appointed supervisor of elementary education. She held that position until early retirement in 1976. Her career as an educator was highlighted by many notable events, including securing funding for the County’s first Head Start Program and bringing the first music teachers to Chesterfield’s African-American elementary schools. Her outstanding leadership was exemplified through serving in capacities such as Vice Chairman of the Richmond-Petersburg Supervisory Group, the Third District Supervisory Group, and the Commission on Elementary Schools of the Southern Association of Colleges and schools, representing the state of Virginia. She served on numerous local, state and national curriculum committees. In 1996, the Marguerite Christian Elementary School was dedicated in Chestsrfield County, paying tribute to the many achievements of this notable educator
Her religious activities, too numerous to itemize, include lifelong membership at First Baptist Church Centralia, where she has served faithfully on the Board of Trustees and the Deaconess Board for many years. She is a charter member and President Emeritus of the Chesterfield County Deaconess Union. In addition, she is Past President of the Women’s Auxiliary of the Virginia State Baptist Deacon’s Convention and Past President of the Women’s Auxiliary of the National Baptist Deacon’s Convention.
In addition to Mrs. Christian’s religious and educational involvements, she has many civic affiliations to add to her credit. She serves on the Board of Directors of the Children’s Home of Virginia Baptists, and after many years recently retired as its treasurer. She is Past Matron of Electa Chapter #7, Order of Eastern Star; a member of the Petersburg Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority; a lifelong member of the NAACP. She is listed in Who’s Who of American Women. The Greater Richmond YWCA recognized her achievements and importance to the community by selecting her in 1977 as Outstanding Woman of the Year in the field of Education. Her name appears at the Chesterfield County Courthouse as a member of the Senior Citizen’s Hall of Fame. She was featured on the cover of the premiere issue of Chesterfield Living Magazine in the 1996 fall/winter edition.
As a family member and friend, Mrs. Christian is devoted, kind and understanding, giving generously of her time and her means for the welfare of others. She still resides in Chesterfield County, where she was born to Mrs. Atla C. Friend and Mr. Timothy Friend, with the late Mr. John Christian.