Retired Milwaukee Public School ( MPS ) educator Gertrude Payton was inducted into the Alcorn State University (formerly Alcorn A&M College) Sports Hall of Fame during ceremonies held in Vicksburg, MS.
She was the only female among the 10 inductees in the 2013 Hall of Fame Class.
Mrs. Payton played guard on Alcorn’s 1947 Varsity Conference Championship Basketball Team.
After receiving her degree in home economics (with a minor in science) in 1950, Mrs. Payton moved to Milwaukee with her husband, Mack W. Payton, and their toddler daughter, Shelia.
She worked in a bag factory and a tannery for two years before securing a teaching position in her field.
Mrs. Payton taught foods and nutrition at Roosevelt Junior High School and North Division High School.
She was promoted to Chairperson of the North Division Home Economics Department.
After earning a master’s degree in educational psychology and 32 additional college credits Mrs. Payton became a Title-1 Coordinator and later a guidance counselor at North and at West Division High School.
When the guidance director at West retired, Mrs. Payton was promoted to fill that position.
She continued to serve as guidance director when West became Milwaukee High School of the Arts; and served in that capacity until her retirement from full-time MPS employment. But she did not retire from education completely.
For approximately 12 years after her official retirement, Mrs. Payton served as a Milwaukee Public Schools District 1-Tutoring Coordinator.