Black History Month: Celebrating Those Who Came Before Us
Beulah Ralph (1927-2010)
Beulah Ralph was born in Hardin, Missouri, in 1927 and grew up during a time when segregation was mandated by law. She moved to Columbia at an early age, where she was a student and graduate of Douglass High School. In 1945, she attended Lincoln University in Jefferson City, Missouri. Mrs. Ralph returned to Douglass High School in 1947 to take a position as a secretary. In 1968, she founded and became the director of the school district’s Home School Visitor program, later known as Home School Communicators. This program, her contribution to Columbia’s civil rights era, was designed to advocate education and opportunity for all. Countless youth and families benefited from her guiding hand, tireless dedication, and high expectations. Mrs. Ralph remained at Douglass High School for 58 years until her retirement in 2005. During her time at Columbia Public Schools she was an educator, community leader, and mentor.