Red Bank Regional High School Principal Risa Clay, of Tinton Falls, was recently honored by the Greater Red Bank N.A.A.C.P. with their Education Award at their 2011 Freedom Fund Luncheon held on Dec. 3 at Gibbs Hall in Tinton Falls.
Clay has served as the RBR principal for the past two years, and was the assistant principal prior to her promotion. She began her distinguished career at RBR 19 years ago as its student assistant counselor.
She founded The SOURCE, RBR’s school-based youth services program twelve years ago and served as its first director. The SOURCE, recognized as a best practices program, has made tremendous strides in fulfilling its mission to remove all barriers that impede a student’s academic success.
As the English Language Learners (ELL) supervisor (a position she continues to hold along with her principal duties), Clay founded the award-winning model program Puente Al Futuro (Bridge to the Future), which has encouraged many ELL students to graduate high school and go on to college aided by a private scholarship program.
Clay was previously recognized for her service in education by Brookdale Community College with their prestigious Wilbur Ray Award. Her leadership has greatly contributed to RBR’s recognition as one of the best schools in the state and nation by both N.J. Monthly and Newsweek Magazine.
She stated her philosophy of education is to “Always do what is right and what is best for kids… Be thoughtful, be passionate, be kind and be patient. Be fair and consistent. Be there. Be present, in mind body and soul.”
Also honored at the event were:
Corporate Award - Mason Smoot, Vice President and General Manager of McDonald’s USA
Community Service Award - C Darryl Hughes, Manager of Cultural Diversity for Meridian Health
Humanitarian Award - Ollie B. Perry, Retired Monmouth Regional educator
President’s Award - Dr. Webster Trammel, Vice President Development, Community and Government Relations, Brookdale College
Clergy Award - Pastor Tolbert L. Blacknall, Senior Pastor and Founder of Bethel Christian Center International, Red Bank
2011 high school graduates Jasmere Rogers of RBR and Mykia Brown of Monmouth Regional were presented with college scholarships.
The Greater Red Bank NAACP shares the mission of its national organization: "to ensure the political, educational, social, and economic equality of rights of all persons and to eliminate racial hatred and racial discrimination." It is one of the oldest chapters in Monmouth County and has operated in the community for 55 years.