Dr. Michael Green Ford
Servant of God, His Community, and Children
Dr. Michael Green Ford, born at home on December 12, 1955, in Lake Charles, Louisiana, to Eddie Green and Etta Bell Ford passed from this life into the presence of God on Palm Sunday, April 14, 2019.
He was the proud father of daughter Julia, an honor graduate of The Hockaday School of Dallas and the University of Southern California. He was extremely proud of their many father-daughter organ/cello duet performances of Joyful, Joyful, We Adore Thee. In addition, he is survived by a host of first cousins, relatives, and dearly beloved friends too numerous to mention.
Dr. Ford received the Bachelor of Science Degree in Speech Communications and Theatre with a minor in English from Southern University in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and a Master of Education Degree at East Texas State University in Commerce. He completed his Doctor of Education degree at Texas A&M University-Commerce. He later enrolled in post-doctoral studies in the Superintendent’s Program at Columbia University’s Teachers College.
Michael enjoyed the distinction and blessing of a bi-vocational career trajectory—service to God as a talented musician and service to children as an educator and determined, powerful advocate for children.
For the past 50 years, he served in church music leadership positions ranging from pianist, organist, choir director and minister of music. In every stage of life, even in the advent of occasional doubts and fears, he gave thanks to God and his growing relationship with Him and his opportunities to serve Him.
At the behest of the National Baptist Convention, USA. Inc., he traveled extensively to Historically Black Colleges and Universities establishing and supporting Baptist Student Unions during his undergraduate days at Southern University.
Dr. Ford served as Minister of Music for the following Dallas churches: Zion Hill Baptist, Pilgrim Rest Baptist, St. Paul United Methodist, and New Jerusalem Institutional Baptist. Additionally, he served as church pianist for Plano’s Shiloh Baptist Church and organist for First Baptist Church of Texas City. He was an instructor of Church Music Literature for the National Baptist Convention, USA, Inc. In his last church ministry, he was blessed to serve as Minister of Music for Camp Wisdom United Methodist Church of Dallas.
For 35 years, he served as a successful classroom teacher, building level administrator, central office administrator, and superintendent level positions in three states: Texas, Missouri, and Virginia.
He began his educational career in the Dallas Independent School District where he served as Speech, English, Debate, and Theatre teacher at the High School for Health Professions. In addition to serving in campus-level administrative positions in Dallas at both the secondary and elementary levels, he served as Coordinator of Secondary Staffing, a position for which he was responsible for staffing 20 comprehensive high schools and 44 middle and magnet schools in Dallas.
Upon leaving the Dallas Independent School District, he accepted a position as Administrative Services Consultant with the Texas Education Agency, providing a broad array of services to 82 North Texas School Districts within the Region X area. As consultant, he trained more than 500 new campus-level administrators in the areas of Instructional Leadership, the Texas Teacher Appraisal System and the Professional Development Appraisal System. His passion for children was highly recognized state-wide because of his ability to work effectively with staff at low-performing campuses toward developing self-assessments directed toward improving student achievement.
He later became the first African-American to serve in a superintendent’s cabinet in the McKinney Independent School District. With full McKinney ISD school board support, Dr. Ford designed and implemented an action-research based Master’s Degree Cohort program whereby Texas A&M staff and qualified district staff served as instructors, paid in full by the school district. Within two years, thirty-three district teachers and staff earned the Master of Education degree through this in-district program. This program was cited as a national model for maximizing the impact of a school district’s staff development budget.
Upon leaving McKinney, he accepted the Assistant Superintendent – Human Resources position with Texas City Independent School District in Galveston County. The school board and community credited his leadership for transforming the office from “Personnel Services” to a more comprehensive “Human Resources” model in organizational structure and services provided.
With a desire to move back to Dallas, he accepted the Assistant Superintendent for Human Resources position with Cedar Hill Independent School District. During his tenure in Cedar Hill, he graduated from Leadership Southwest, served as member of Northwood University Foundation Board, and was a member of Cedar Hill Rotary.
After 31 years of service to Texas schools, Dr. Ford attempted to retire. His desire to serve children postponed that retirement, though, when he was asked to serve as Associate Superintendent-Human Resources for Kansas City Missouri Schools and Director of Recruiting for Loudon County Public Schools in Northern Virginia. He finally, truly retired from public school service in the early 2000’s to act as the primary care giver for his father.
Dr. Ford was a member and former president of the Dallas Metroplex Musicians’ Association, The National Association of Negro Musicians, Inc., Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., and The National Convention of Gospel Choirs and Choruses. Additionally, he served on the Bruce R. Foote Memorial Scholarship Foundation Board.
He was sincerely grateful to God for the privilege to share his gifts along life’s journey. Michael lived his life following the encouragement of his parents and grandparents who poured everything they had into him and admonished him: “Baby, never let success go to your head, and never let failure go to your heart.”
Soli Deo Gloria
Deo gratias pro vita vadum Dr. Michael Ford
Date: Friday, April 26, 2019
Time: 11:00 am - 3:00 pm
Camp Wisdom United Methodist Church
Date: Friday, April 26, 2019
Time: 4:00 pm - 6:00 pm
Date: Friday, April 26, 2019
Time: 7:00 pm