Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Malcolm X and Barack Obama are all part of an elite list of leaders whose cities have named streets after them. St. Louis Community College adjunct instructor Rodney Wead, Ph.D., will soon join such an esteemed list.
The ceremony to name the street after Wead will take place at 10 a.m. Friday, Sept. 14, at the intersection of 52nd and Ames streets in Omaha, Neb.
In the late 1960s and early ‘70s, Wead was a significant player in the establishment of a Black-owned and operated bank housed in Omaha’s Black community. Wead also was the driving force behind the first Black-owned and managed credit union (the Franklin Credit Union) as well as the first Black-owned and operated radio station, KOWH-FM. Wead was also highly active with issues of civil rights and consistently spoke for the poor and disenfranchised in the community.
From humble beginnings to community hero, Wead’s expertise is far reaching as an educator, and in the areas of economic development, African-American studies and cultural diversity.
Wead has taught sociology at STLCC’s Forest Park campus for more than 17 years, and is well respected by both his peers and students.
“Dr. Wead is an inspiration to faculty and students. He emanates intellect, kindness and the drive to make the world a better place,” said Andrea Nichols, professor of sociology at STLCC-Forest Park.
Wead holds a bachelor’s degree in history and education from Dana College (Blair, Neb.), a master’s degree in urban studies from Roosevelt University (Chicago, Ill.), and a doctorate in sociology from Union Institute (Cincinnati, Ohio). He also is recognized nationwide for his publications, teaching and leadership for organizations in their outreach to minorities, particularly in the area of development and self-help.