10 Oct Ormie King: Honoring the 2021 Auburn Athletic Hall of Fame induction class | History
Born in Columbus, Ohio, Tamela Ray graduated from Union Springs Central School in 1978. After her graduation, Tamela went on to earn her bachelor’s degree in physical education with a minor in sociology at Ithaca College. While attending Ithaca, Ray also played for the women’s field hockey team and was a member of the 1978 Association for Intercollegiate Athletics for Women New York State championship team. She also played for the women’s softball team with whom she acted the role of captain, was given the title of MVP, and had an NCAA World Series appearance. She continued her studies at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, where she earned her master’s degree in physical education with a concentration on sport studies and focused her thesis on “College Students’ Perceptions of Selected Women’s Roles.” Four years after graduating from UNC, Tamela Ray received her certificate of advanced studies from SUNY Cortland and then soon after her doctorate in education from Syracuse University in 2010. Her dissertation was titled “High School Athletic Directors: An examination of the role, realities, and career progressions.”
While pursuing her educational goals, Tamela simultaneously held the role of Auburn physical education teacher, varsity field hockey coach, founder and coach of the varsity girls lacrosse team, the junior varsity girls volleyball coach, and the freshman girls volleyball coach. She was also a founding member of the AHS Athletic Hall of Fame, and last but certainly not least, she was the director of health, physical education and athletics for the Auburn school district, which she held for 26 years. But the list of her dedications to the Auburn school district does not stop there. Tamela helped add fitness centers, free weight lifting facilities, outdoor grass fiends and artificial turf fields to the Auburn grounds for the benefit of future athletes. She was a president and vice president of the Auburn Administrators Association, a member of the Wellness Committee, and a member of the Curriculum Council. Tamela participated in the PE Program as the PE director, during which she helped to develop an elective program that allowed for student choice, started district-wide elementary physical education events so that students to come together to perform, compete and play, and received the Carol M. White Pep Grant, which allowed for increased professional development opportunities.
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