E.R. Mason, current Clinton City Board of Education vice chairman and past Clinton High School associate principal and athletic director, was recently inducted into the Shaw University Athletic Hall of Fame.
He was among eight inducted during ceremonies at the Willie E. Gray Student Center Ballroom Thursday, Oct. 17.
“I was truly humbled to have been inducted,” Mason said. “And I also blessed by having the opportunity to teach, coach and to serve in administration as an assistant principal and athletic director. I worked in two of the best high school athletic programs, White Oak High School in Jacksonville and Clinton High School in Clinton.
“During the eight years that I coached, I tried to get the very best from each player and to put each one of them in a situation that was best for his individual talents and growth. As the athletic director, I tried to treat the position not as a job but as a vocation, putting in those hours beyond those set in order to make certain that the student athletes had all the best facilities, the best training and the best changes for improvement that it was possible to have.”
William E. Hooker, chairman of Shaw’s Athletic Hall of Fame, noted that it had been a “labor of love” for the committee to review and select eight “distinguished and highly regarded Shaw University athletes” for induction into the select group of outstanding Hall of Fame members.
“The achievements of these candidates so impressed the selection committee that they be deemed worthy of this high honor for induction as members of the 2013 class.” All eight, he said, “had performed well and given full measure to your university as athletes in the community where you resided.”
Mason has held numerous educational and athletic positions during a 41-year career in North Carolina. He retired in 2003.
He graduated as valedictorian from Berkley High School in Aberdeen in 1958 and attended Shaw University from 1958-1962 where he majored in biology and minored in chemistry. He received a MA degree in education in 1986 from East Carolina University in Greenville.
Mason began his career as a science teacher and basketball coach at Shawtown High School in Lillington in 1962. He served as the head junior varsity basketball coach and assistant coach for the boys’ varsity basketball team.
In 1966, Mason and his wife, Clementine, moved to Clinton where he began a job as a biology and chemistry teach at Clear Run High School in Garland. He served as the head JV basketball coach, assistant coach for the boys’ varsity team, co-sponsor of the SGA and co-sponsor of the school yearbook. He was transferred in 1969 to Union High School to teach biology and chemistry and to coach basketball and baseball.
In 1970, Mason became an assistant principal and athletic director at White Oak High School in Jacksonville. The baseball team won the state championship in 1978 and 1979, achieving a 52-game winning streak, a still standing NC High School Athletic Association record and stands third in the nation.
Mason, in 1997, became the associate principal and athletic director at Clinton High. During his tenure, the academic and athletic programs rated exceptional; the school’s varsity football team won the state 2A championship and the school won six other championships: men’s tennis and softball; varsity football and baseball; girls’ volleyball; and varsity boys’ basketball.
He is very active in his church, First Baptist, 900 College St., where he serves as chairman of the Deacon Board and superintendent of Sunday school. He and his wife have four sons, David, Lawrence, Edward Jr. and Willard. They have 11 grandchildren and 2 great-grandchildren.