William O’Neal Lockridge (November 22, 1947 - January 12, 2011) was born in Columbia, Tennessee and raised in Chicago, Illinois with his brother. Allen Lockridge who proceeded him in death and sister, Joy (Lockridge) Majied. William attended public schools in Chicago, Illinois. Upon graduation, he attended and graduated from Tennessee State University in Nashville, Tennessee with a Bachelors Degree in Education.
William’s political climb in D.C., flourished as field manager for the Patricia R. Harris Mayoral Campaign in 1980. He began to serve on various community organizations including NPC (Neighborhood Planning Council), ANC (Advisory Neighborhood Commission), PTA (Parent Teacher Association), ARCH (Action to Rehabilitate Housing), Alabama Avenue Renaissance Task Force, the Board of Education and State Board of Education.
William worked as Assistant Director for the Medico-Chirurgical Society coordinating, evaluating, and conducting over 500 HIV/AIDs workshops for community organizations, DC Public Schools, government agencies and churches. His other accomplishments included: Vice President of the Board of Education; Chair of the Finance Committee; President of Simon Elementary School PTA, passage of three consecutive balanced budgets; development of the Master Facilities Plan which was the guiding force for building new schools and renovating existing facilities; introduction of resolutions making Phelps a free-standing Vocational Career Development School and providing at least one vocational education program at every senior high school. William also fought passionately to push for a moratorium on new charter schools and provided resolutions that opposed requirement of parents of special needs children to prove their kids needs for services.William began his 15-year career in the D.C. Public School System in 1983 before he was elected to the Board of Education. He served as a teacher coordinator, parent advocate for special needs, biology teacher and truancy officer. William was a man of principle who tirelessly worked for the citizens of the D.C. through his activism, advocacy and leadership for over 30 years. He was a courageous role-model and surrogate father to many and has left a lasting legacy and longstanding commitment to the children of Washington, D.C.
While working on the D.C. Board of Education as State Board of Education Representative, he was an advocate for children and the voice of the people. William built partnerships with community members and Toyota Motor Corporation to provide 33,000 books—1,000 books for each school in Southeast and over $1.5M for the Ballou SHS Automotive Program; he championed the building of three new schools in Wards 7 & 8—Kelly Miller Middle School, Patterson and Randle Highland Elementary schools; he developed partnerships with DC Public Schools and DC Parks & Recreation, UDC and the Woodland Tigers to lease land at Stanton Elementary and build a recreation facility; he supported and worked to develop International Baccalaureate Program and Barbering Program at Woodson SHS.
William joined many organizations including the NAACP, the National School Boards Association, the Council of Urban Boards of Education, the National Alliance of Black School Educators; DC Democratic State Committee and served as president of the Ward Eight Democrats, Inc.
On July 8, 1989, William married the former Wanda Matthews and had one son, Stefan O’Neal Lockridge. William also had one daughter, Joy (Lockridge) Ross.
The William O. Lockridge Community Foundation was established shortly after William’s passing in January 2011 not only in his memory, but more importantly, as a community vehicle that will keep his legacy alive. William taught in the DC Public School system for 15 years, and served as a member of the DC Board of Education, later the State Board of Education, for more than 20 years. He was passionate about the importance of education in today’s society; specifically, education equality in Wards 7 and 8.
The William O. Lockridge Community Foundation (WOLCF), founded in 2011, is a non-profit organization located in Southeast Washington, D.C. The WOLCF promotes access to higher education to students in Wards 7 and 8 by offering scholarships, emergency financial assistance and international travel.
Emergency Student Assistance Fund
The purpose of this fund is to assist students with educational costs during times of emergencies or unexpected financial needs.
International Ambassadors Program
The goal of the International Ambassador Program is to give students an opportunity to develop an understanding and appreciation that international travel can bridge the gap to learning by experiencing other cultures and fostering critical thinking. American Students share stories on attending school and growing up in America and in turn they will hear similar stories from the native students. They will also visit villages and participate in a host of cultural and social activities during the visit. A key component of the visit will include planned volunteer activities in which the American students will have the opportunity to give back by planting crops, tutoring, and other volunteer activities.
The purpose of the scholarship program is to provide financial aid to DC Public School graduating seniors interested in pursuing post-high school course of study at either a college/university or other postsecondary institution
US Foreign Service Initiative (USFSI)
The goal of the USFSI is to exposed middle and high school students who live in Wards 7 and Ward 8 or are residents to professional and nonprofessional career options overseas with the U.S. Government and private sector, not only in Africa but around the world.