Page 11 - Salem Magazine Spring 2011
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  “I’ve known Jerry for 37 years and I knew that he not only had experience, but was very child oriented,” says Bryant. “He came over, interviewed and was the best candidate by far.”
“I have nothing but good memories of my time in Roanoke, but Roanoke City is different place to work when compared to Salem. Young people are the focus and the priority here and it’s always been that way,” he says. “Wayne Tripp asked me what I expected to do if I got this job, and I told him I planned to work until 2004 and retire because at that point my wife and I would be 55-years-old.”
But 2004 rolled around and it was time to renovate Andrew Lewis, so Campbell decided to stay on and be a part of the process that would transform the historic landmark on College Ave. into a state-of- the-art middle school.
“Then once the building was finished, I wasn’t about to hand it over to a new principal right away,” he says with a chuckle.
By sticking around a few extra years he got to watch three of his former assistant principals at Lewis climb the administration ladder right here in Salem. Alan Seibert became Superintendent,
Margaret Humphrey the principal at South Salem and Forest Jones will take over for Campbell at ALMS on July 1.
“I am extremely proud of the fact that Alan, Margaret and Forest were assistants here and have now moved on to bigger and better things,” he says. “Forest is like a sponge in that he listens, pays attention and loves kids, so I feel very comfortable with this choice and I think he will do an excellent job.”
They aren’t the only folks in education that Campbell has influenced in his life. His wife of 39 years is a lifelong educator known for her outstanding work as a guidance counselor and coach in Botetourt County and all three of their children are also teachers. Dan teaches social studies at Bayside High in Virginia Beach, Kim is a Physical Education teacher at Salem High and Rob is social studies teacher at Glenvar.
“I never thought I would be a principal for 22 years, but I think any time you’ve been in a job for a long period of time it speaks to the consistency of what you’ve done,” he says. “My goal has always been to do a good job with the young people and my children now try to do the same thing as teachers.”
When Campbell signed his first teaching contract in 1972 it was for all of $6,200. The money and the kids have definitely changed over the years, but his style hasn’t wavered.
“I believe young people want to be disciplined and I believe parents expect kids to be disciplined, and I don’t think I’ve changed a whole lot over the years,” he says.
“The kids respect you for what you did even though they may not have agreed with it at the time,” says Bryant. “Jerry and I have kids who have gone on to become dentists, lawyers and doctors and you always hope that you’ve had a small part in helping them succeed.”
Campbell has been getting affirmation of just that more and more as the years go by.
Two years ago, one of his former players at William Fleming, who is now a success- ful photographer in Atlanta, dropped by the office to says thanks to Campbell for not giving up on him.
“He told me that every time he got in trouble I should have suspended him, but instead I made him sit down at a desk and do the work that he wouldn’t do for his teachers,” he says. “He gave me a hug and
 Campbell and Assistant Superintendent Mike Bryant
have been friends and co-workers since the 1970s
Salem Magazine Spring Issue 2011 11
 Your Salem

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