State of Georgia recognizes Paine Alumna with bridge dedication

Posted by ncarter | 07/14/2011 11:43 AM

 (Augusta, GA) – The State of Georgia will dedicate the 15th Street bridge over Wrightsboro Road to honor the life and legacy of the late Rosa T. Beard, ’42. The dedication service will take place on Saturday, July 30, 2011 at 10:00 a.m. in the Candler Memorial Library Building on the campus of Paine College. Immediately following the dedication service, the unveiling of the commemorative bridge sign will take place at the (west side) of the bridge at 15th Street and Central Avenue. The event is open to the public.

Rosa T. Beard was an educator in the Richmond County Public Schools, founder of the Rocket Club and the Rosa T. Beard Debutant Club. Her life spanned nine decades with seventy of them actively engaged in making a difference in the lives of young people and being actively engaged in the Augusta community.

Her generosity was felt and remembered by many; especially Rep. Wayne Howard, D-Augusta who believed because of her unwavering service to the community something should be done to honor her legacy. “She was bridge builder for many decades, “ Howard said.

After determining that bridge was available for naming, Howard moved forward with the General Assembly to name the bridge in Beard’s honor. According to Howard, an “overwhelming majority” voted in favor of the naming of the bridge and later the Gov. Nathan Deal signed off.

The 15th Street Bridge was chosen because it was a bridge that Beard traveled for decades. It was in close proximity to her residence, T.W. Josey High School, Paine College, and Shiloh Community Center all, which she spent numerous hours of service.

“I hope that the community embraces it as something we should do more often to identify those who positively stood out in our communities. This shows our youth that we should do things to preserve history and this is one thing I thought we could do to preserve her name in history,” Howard said.

Earlier this year, the Georgia House and Senate recognized the Beard for her public service and the founding of various organizations that have improved the lives of countless young women and men throughout the Central Savannah River Area. One of her most notable accomplishments is the founding of the Rosa T. Beard Debutante Club, an organization that has advised and cultured young women for over forty-seven years.

Beard has been recognized for her service to youth in general, young women in particular and a committed service to the CSRA community and she does so with love, care and the most humble spirit. She is the recipient of the “Dream Keeper Award, the NAACP Presidential Service Award, the "key to the city of Augusta" presented in 2006 by Deke Copenhaver, mayor of Augusta and WRDW -News 6 recognized her for there “Making a Difference” feature. The City of Augusta recognized her with a proclamation for her dedication as a community servant.

Beard was an active and dedicated member of the Paine College National Alumni Association and the Augusta Paine College Club, a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., and a member of the Board of Directors of Shiloh Community Center and Antioch Baptist Church.