Theodore P. Gnagey

Theodore P. Gnagey, 1923

Ph.B., Denison University
M.A., Columbia University

Orange, N.J.

Citation awarded on Saturday, June 2, 1973

Now retired, Theodore P. Gnagey served as director of the South Orange—Maplewood (N.J.) Adult School for 25 years. His programming has been recognized for its innovation in meeting the educational needs of the adult community. He has also been an English teacher for three years.

A nationally recognized leader in adult education, he has contributed many articles to the Ault Education Association of the U.S.A.’s publications, Adult Education and Adult Leadership. He has been a member of the Publications Committee of AEA since 1952, head of AEA’s science and technology sections, and active in the National Association for Public School Adult Education. He received the 1960 Award for Distinguished Leadership from AEA in New Jersey.

Three quotations from articles of his published in Adult Leadership state well the goals of his efforts to further adult education. They are “preventing the erosion of the educated mind is just as important as tutoring the uneducated one” (1970), “the promotion of liberal education for adults is my principal interest in adult education” (Nov. 1959), and “a class in which 10 people develop a line of poetry may, in many ways, be a greater success than one in which 50 couples learn a few of the newest dance steps” (Oct. 1962).

In 1966 at the Adult Education Association of the USA, he presented a new approach toward bridging the gap between the sciences and the arts in adult education.

When he retired at 72 last year, 4,400 adults were enrolled for 188 courses in his last term.