School board dedicates Yvonne Salter Noble Professional Learning Center

By Haley Mitchell Godwin

In a heartfelt tribute to a lifetime of dedication to education, the Crenshaw County Board of Education (CCBOE) has immortalized the name of Yvonne Salter Noble, a revered figure in the county’s educational history, by renaming the former Crenshaw County Training School/Woodford Avenue High School cafeteria as the “Yvonne Salter Noble Professional Learning Center.” The center will be used for professional development for faculty and staff as well as by students taking dual enrollment courses. 

During its April 15 meeting, the CCBOE passed a proclamation marking this significant milestone for the school system. Superintendent of Crenshaw County Schools Dodd Hawthorne expressed gratitude for Noble’s profound impact on the school system and the community.

“We were honored to recognize Ms. Noble for the impact that she made in the lives of so many students in Crenshaw County Schools,” Hawthorne said. “As a teacher, counselor and administrator, Ms. Noble definitely left her legacy over a 45 year career. We are thankful for her and the lasting impact that she has made on so many people in Crenshaw County.”

Born to Jessie and Bessie Salter in Luverne, Noble’s commitment to her community has remained steadfast. Actively involved in various organizations, she is a cherished member of the Star of Hope Missionary Baptist Church, the Allen Lily Chapter #700 of the Order of the Eastern Star and Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., among other organizations.

Noble’s journey through education began humbly in a two-room schoolhouse in the Star Hope community near Vidette. Despite her modest beginnings, Noble’s passion for learning propelled her through the segregated school system of Alabama, eventually leading her to graduate from Crenshaw County Training School, later known as Woodford Avenue High, in 1955.

Later on, armed with a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Education from Miles College and further qualifications from Kent State University and Alabama State University, Noble embarked on a distinguished career spanning over four decades.

Her professional tenure spanned 45 years within the Crenshaw County School System. Beginning as a second-grade teacher in 1963, Noble’s roles evolved to encompass teaching business education and English at the high school level and included holding pivotal positions such as vocational guidance counselor, special education supervisor and career tech director, among others.

The decision to rename a portion of the school building in Noble’s honor was championed by CCBOE board member Annie Ziegler, who was eager to honor Noble’s exemplary service.

“The idea of renaming a portion of the building that used to be Woodford Avenue School in honor of Mrs. Yvonne Noble was presented to me by Mrs. Betty Dawson,” said Ziegler. “My knowing Ms. Noble and all that she has contributed to the Crenshaw County School System through 45 years of service as a teacher, counselor and administrator, I was very supportive of the idea and eager to present it for consideration. I felt privileged to be a part of the process that honored Mrs. Nobel with this dedication in the presence of her family and friends. I feel we couldn’t have chosen a more deserving honoree.”

According to Luverne resident Betty Dawson, who is the Luverne City council person for District 1, Noble’s impact extended beyond the classroom, serving as a mentor and advocate for countless students and colleagues. Dawson, who attended Crenshaw County Training School until it closed when she was in 10th grade, praised Noble as an honorable and dedicated educator whose influence continues to resonate, touting Noble as being her mentor.

“Ms. Yvonne Salter Noble is an extremely honorable woman and she carries herself like a lady every single day,” Dawson said. “All through her life, Yvonne has been an advocate for children and adults whose lives she has touched  and she instilled wonderful values in all that she taught. She has gained the respect of all who have crossed her path because of the respect she shows others.she respects others.This building, formally the Crenshaw County Training School/Woodford Avenue High School cafeteria, was built in 1964 to to feed the students hot meals that would sustain their bodies. Mrs. Noble fed the minds of the students she taught and the Yvonne Salter Noble Professional Learning Center and this dedication will continue to help feed our young leaders, our leaders of tomorrow.”