Dr. Audrey Potts Neal
Dr. Audrey Potts Neal, a native of Sumter, South Carolina, is the oldest child of the late Mr. Howard L. and Mrs. Mary Jane Tomlin Potts. She has one sister, Mrs. Nancy P. Wilson, and one brother, Reverend Gerald Tomlin. She is the widow of Dr. Westberry H. Neal, Sr., mother of Mrs. Marilyn N. Thomas and Mr. Westberry H. Neal, Jr. She has four lovely grandchildren: Marilyn Janice Thomas, Oliver Thomas, Jr., Laura Neal and Wayne Neal.
As a member of the Mulberry Baptist Church in Sumter, South Carolina, Dr. Neal served on the Young Adult Choir, Usher Board, Sunday school and Missionary Society. Dr. Neal is currently a member of the First Nazareth Baptist Church where she is a member of the Missions Ministry, Sunday school, Advisor to the YWA’s and a member of the Executive Board of the Women’s Department of the Midlands Baptist Association.
Dr. Neal attended Morris College in Sumter, South Carolina, from which she received the bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education. She holds the Master of Education degree in Business Education from the South Carolina State University in Orangeburg, South Carolina, and has done further study at the University of South Carolina, Columbia, South Carolina, where she has completed 30 hours in Elementary Education.
Her first job was as an administrative assistant at Job’s Mortuary in Sumter, South Carolina. The remainder of her career has been in education, beginning as a 3rd grade teacher at Fleming Elementary School in Lynchburg, South Carolina, and then in various capacities at Morris College in Sumter, South Carolina to include: Instructor in the Education department and Director of Career Planning, Cooperative Education, and Placement.
After leaving Morris College, Dr. Neal went back to teaching in the public schools, serving one year as a 3rd/4th grade teacher at Gadsden Elementary School in Gadsden, South Carolina. She has been a teacher at Carver, now Carver-Lyon Elementary School, in Columbia, South Carolina, for the 28 years and served as grade level chair. Dr. Neal has also served as a reading interventionist, AAP contact person, coordinator of afterschool programs, and coordinator of the Saturday Academy at Carver-Lyon Elementary School, where she enjoyed working with children from diverse populations. She is now a retired educator.
She has been active in both professional and community organizations, as well as in religious work. She was a member of the Southern College Placement Association, American Association of Higher Education, South Carolina Education Association, Columbia Area Reading Council, Association of Schools and Curriculum Development, and the South Carolina Association of Schools and Black Educators. As a member of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc., she has also served as the assistant Grammateus of the Southeastern Region, and is a former member of the Contemporary Federated Women.
Her service to religious organizations includes being a member of the International Association of Ministers’ Wives and Widow Alliance, Inc., and of the Interdenominational Ministers’ Wives and Widow Alliance of Columbia, South Carolina, of which she has served as corresponding secretary and president. She has served as president of the Wateree Woman’s Convention, Upper Division as well as financial and recording secretary of the Woman’s Baptist Educational and Missionary Convention of South Carolina.
Dr. Neal is currently serving as President of the Woman’s Baptist Educational and Missionary Convention of South Carolina, Second Vice-President of the Southern Region Women’s Department of the Progressive National Baptist Convention, Inc., Chairperson of the Program Committee in the Women’s Department of the Progressive National Baptist Convention, Inc., a Member of the Trustee Board of Morris College and Benedict College.
Dr. Neal’s honors include being elected the 1993-1994 Teacher of the Year for Carver Elementary School in Columbia, and being one of the seven finalists for Richland School District One, Teacher of the Year in the same year. In 1990-1991, she was chosen “Miss Baptist” of the Baptist Educational and Missionary Convention of South Carolina. In 1978, she received the Outstanding Young Women of America award. She received the Doctor of Humane Letters Degree in May, 2015 from her Alma Mater, Morris College.
Her presentations include a reaction paper, “Beyond Freedom and Dignity,” and a paper on “How Children Learn through Personal Experience.”
Dr. Neal enjoys reading, traveling, and shopping. Her favorite scripture is “In all thy ways acknowledge Him and He shall direct thy paths.”