Ronald Leonard, the indefatigable leader of the Black Educators Caucus of Palm Beach County, died Friday night at Palm Beach Gardens Medical Center. He was 63.
Funeral services are scheduled for 11 a.m. on Sunday, November 23 at Inlet Grove High School, located at 600 W. 28th Street in Riviera Beach.
Leonard worked for 37 years for the School District of Palm Beach County, serving as primarily a high school teacher, then vice principal and career guidance counselor. He retired in 2010.
Besides the leadership of the BEC, Mr. Leonard also served on the boards of the Urban League of Palm Beach County, the Sickle Cell Foundation of Palm Beach County and Treasure Coast and, most recently, the Riviera Beach Housing Authority. He left that board in May.
“Whatever he did, he put his whole heart into it,” said Anne Leonard, his wife of 37 years.
A prodigious fundraiser for projects that served students, teachers and administrators of color,. Leonard was known for always making the extra call for a host of events he created or led. Among them: the BEC’s annual scholarship breakfast, held each year in May; the Million Father March, a national movement that seeks to have men take their children to school on the first day; town hall meetings with schools superintendents; and, most recently, a BEC-fundraising roast of Palm Beach County Mayor Priscilla Taylor. That event occurred on the day after his death.
School board member Debra Robinson worked closely with Leonard over the years and said the board plans to present a proclamation in his honor at its Wednesday board meeting at district headquarters.
“We didn’t agree on every topic but on one thing there was no confusion: we are both committed to success for our students and teachers,” Dr. Robinson said. “He will be greatly missed.”