Barbara Poulson Whaley “Nana” went home to Jesus on August 14th, 2022, at the age of 90.
Barbara was born to John Thomas and Mary “Mamie” Poulson on December 31st, 1931, in Winchester Virginia. Barbara met her husband, Thomas Major Whaley at a school social at St Frances de Sales High School in Rock Castle Virginia. Barbara and Thomas were married in Washington DC in after Barbara’s graduation from Dunbarton College of the Holy Cross in Washington DC.
Barbara and Thomas started their lives together in Spartanburg, South Carolina where they were the proprietors of Whaley’s Pharmacy. It was there in Spartanburg that two children, Dolores and Thomas Jr,. were born. Following their migration north in 1958 Barbara and Thomas soon added Mary “Polly” and Lynn to the fold bringing the total number of children to four. Thomas’s subsequent death in 1964 left Barbara a single mother.
Barbara began her career in elementary education in Spartanburg South Carolina in 1957. Moving to Akron in 1958 she began teaching at St John the Baptists Parochial School before joining the Akron Public School system 1n 1959, Barbara taught first and third grade at McEbright elementary school until 1973, From there her career mushroomed into cadet principalships (Robinson and Betty Jane) to Principalships (McEbright, David Hill, and Margaret Park). An educational pioneer Barbara initiated and/or managed the: Headstart program, High Intensity reading Centers, and Project Trend. Barbara’s education career culminated as the Coordinator of Title I Kindergarten Reading and Math programs for the Akron Public Schools where she retired in 1999 with over 40 years of service the children of Akron Ohio.
In addition to being a dedicated and loving mother and educator, Barbara was actively involved in various professional organizations, Including: (reading) IRA, RRCNA, ORIRA, (math) NCTM, OCTM, (education/administration) NAESPA, OAASFEP, OEA, Akron NASBE. A member of St. Sebastian’s Parish Barbara was also a member of the Urban League, the NAACP, the Association for Retarded Citizens, and the Mu Rho Zeta Graduate Chapter of the Zeta Phi Beta Sorority.
Barbara joins: her mother and father John and Mary, her husband Thomas, her daughter Dolores, her aunts Madeline, May and Ruth, her uncle William (Bill), her siblings John, Joseph, and Lillian, her in laws Alan, Ergie, Melbro, Ellsworth, Vastyne, Tina, Buddy and Parnell, cousins Johnnie and Armenta, Nieces and nephews David, Lillian, Alan, and Joseph, great grandchildren Aarion and TY’Yana, and friends Weaver, and Rudy in heaven.
Barbara is survived by: her children, Thomas (Marina), Mary and Lynn, her nieces and nephews, John, Michael, Russel, Greco, Dimitri (Micky), Veronica, Lowell (Patrick), Jocelyn, Scottie, Tammie, Rodd, Ray, Vastine, Robin, Gary, D’anza, Cousins Christopher, Patsy, Betty Charles, John, Tush, Lucy, Grandchildren, Homell, Rebecca, Barbara, Matthew, Timothy, Martinique, Angel, Blaine, Thomas III, Tina, and Brianna. Eighteen Great Grandchildren, and four Great-Great Grandchildren.