Mrs. Gladys Horn was county agent for 4-H in Choctaw County prior to her retirement in September 1981. She spent her entire thirty-two years with the Extension Service in Choctaw County, having begun her Extension career on April 1, 1950.
A native of Lunenburg, Virginia, Mrs. Horn completed her high school education at the Lunenburg County Training School, Victoria, Virginia, in 1941. She received a B.S. degree in home economics and a Certificate in home crafts from Tuskegee Institute in 1949.
The writings of Mrs. Horn (then Miss Abernathy) during her formative years reveal a deep understanding of Negro life. Her thoughts and ideas were published in several books and magazines. Titles of books include: Up From Slavery, Freedom Road, Pilgrim’s Inn, Along This Way, and Leave Her to Heaven. Articles appeared in such notable periodicals as Life, Newsweek, and Time.
Committed to enriching the lives around her, Mrs. Horn joined the Extension family as a means of helping others. During her Extension career, she worked with numerous 4-H’ers and homemakers. She was a staunch believer in developing young people into good citizens and good leaders. To her credit, she has eight former 4-H’ers who are now doctors, some who are lawyers, and many who are teachers and administrators.
She conducted a Safe Water Supply Education Program and in so doing was responsible for more than two hundred families drilling safe wells.
She was instrumental in getting three community pride grants to improve rural churches and one for garbage improvement. From these improvements, families took more pride in their communities.
Mrs. Horn placed emphasis on good health through good nutrition. There, she worked with homemakers and 4-H’ers to have good garden and food preservation programs. Some women and 4-H’ers who had never canned or used a pressure canner are now using them with ease.
Mrs. Horn was an active member of the Greater First Baptist Church, teacher of the young adult class, a member of the choir, member of the State and National Association of Extension Home Economists, State and National Association of 4-H Agents, member of the Alabama Cooperative Extension Service Employees Organization, and a member of AEA/NEA.
In recognition of her devotion and accomplishments, the name of Gladys A. Horn is inscribed on the dedicatory plaque in the Extension Memorial Chapel.
Chapel Plaque Inscription Number: 69