James E. McDonald
Mr. James E. McDonald was a 1937 graduate of Coppin. Mr. McDonald had a deep affinity for Coppin. He served as a member of the CSU Development Foundation Board and he also served as the Treasurer of the CSU National Alumni Association. He was a long-time supporter, and upon his death in 2010 Coppin received a bequest in the amount of $348,000-the largest single planned gift the university has ever received.
The Life of James Edward McDonald
Born in Dunn, North Carolina in 1914, he was raised in Baltimore, Maryland from age 8. He attended Booker T. Washington Junior High School and Frederick Douglass Senior High School and went on to attend Coppin Normal School in 1934. During this era, Coppin occupied space at 1100 N. Mount Street in West Baltimore and offered a three-year certificate program in teacher education.
After his second year of teaching, he was appointed as a Demonstration Teacher for the Baltimore Public School System and Supervisor of teachers in the field, who were students at Coppin. While teaching and serving in these other capacities, he enrolled at Morgan State University earning the Bachelor of Science degree. Soon after, he earned a Master's in Education and a certificate in Public School Administration from New York University in 1950.
His career in education was interrupted by a stint in the Armed Forces. He served in the 92nd Infantry Division along-side United State Maryland Senator, the Honorable Parren J. Mitchell. Both were Platoon Leaders.
He retired from the Army at the rank of 1st Lieutenant. Looking back on his career which he retired from in 1979 after 42 years of service, he held administrative positions as an Assistant Principal and as the Principal of four (4) elementary schools. To his credit, he has trained, mentored, and supervised hundreds of Baltimore City elementary school teachers.