James E. Ford


James E. Ford of Garinger High School is the 2014 Burroughs Wellcome Fund North Carolina Teacher of the Year. Ford is a ninth-grade world history teacher who began his career in Rockford Public Schools in Rockford, Illinois. He has been a teacher in Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools since 2010. Ford earned a bachelor of science in mass communication from Illinois State University in 2003 and a master’s degree in teaching Rockford University in 2009.


Ford has recently completed his certification in educational leadership from Wingate University. He is a member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. Ford did not decide to become a teacher immediately after college but his jobs were always connected to young people. He worked as a truancy intervention specialist in high schools. He was also director of a teen center that provided educational and after-school activities for youth at risk of dropping out of school. He considers his work to be his “life-calling” and has dedicated himself to serving his community through education. James is a husband, father, educator, activist, minister and musical artist. ”


Additionally, Mr. Ford has been selected as both the Charlotte Post Foundation and National Alliance of Black School Educators “Teacher of the Year” as well as Charlotte Magazine’s “Charlottean of the Year”.