William Osborne

Photo courtesy of Courtnay Osborne.

Osborne, William Adolphus (1904–1975)

By Glenn O. Phillips

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Glenn O. Phillips, Ph.D. (Howard University, Washington, D.C.), although retired, is actively writing, researching, lecturing, and publishing. He was a professor at Morgan State University, Howard University, and the University of the Southern Caribbean. He has authored and published numerous articles, book reviews, and books, including “The African Diaspora Experience,” “Singing in a Strange Land: The History of the Hanson Place Church,” “African American Leaders of Maryland,” and “The Caribbean Basin Initiative.”

First Published: January 29, 2020

William Adolphus Osborne was a leading pioneering Caribbean Adventist educator and administrator who worked and inspired Adventist youth for more than 40 years between 1930 and 1975.

William Adolphus Osborne was born April 14, 1904, in Georgetown, British Guiana (Guyana) and he was baptized in 1923 before enrolling as the seventh student, and first from his country, to attend the East Caribbean Training School (now University of the Southern Caribbean) in Maracas Valley, Trinidad.1 He registered at that school on October 19, 1927, and remained on the campus as a student and teacher until his graduation from the twelfth grade on June 30, 1935. His class of three graduates was the first of its kind at the school.2

Dr. Osborne served in numerous teaching and administrative positions in later years at both Adventist and secular institutions of higher learning. He taught and was academic dean at Caribbean Union College, Oakwood College (now Oakwood University) and Winston-Salem State College, and dean of the School of Business at Alabama Agricultural and Mechanical University, and president of West Indies College (now North Caribbean University) for the 1961-1962 school year.

From his early years at the East Caribbean Training School he was a model student and leader of students, showing the way for others and becoming a teacher and counselor to hundreds of students. In his later years he became an ordained Adventist minister, serving in Alabama, and he continued to inspire youth to train to serve the communities where they lived.3

He received his Ph.D. from Clarke University in Massachusetts. He also served on numerous community and educational boards and associations. He taught as a professor of business at Fisk University in Nashville, Tennessee. He retired in May 1975 from the deanship at Alabama A&M University in Normal, Alabama.4

At the time of his death, he was a member of the Huntsville-Madison County Chamber of Commerce, Delta Mu Delta Honor Society, Alpha Kappa Mu Honor Society, American Accounting Association, Royal Economic Society, Association of International Accountants, Manpower Area Planning Commission, and Vice-Chairperson of the Alabama Council of Deans of Schools of Business; he was also a Notary Public.5

Dr. Osborne died Monday, September 1, 1975, at the Huntsville Hospital, Huntsville, Alabama, and his funeral was held on Thursday, September 4, 1975, at the Oakwood College Church where he had served for years. He was buried at Jordan Lane at the Northside Cemetery in Huntsville, Alabama. He was survived by his wife, Pauline Aurara Dean Osborne and two sons: Harold Courtnay and Ian Selby.6

Sources

“Obituary of Dr. William A. Osborne.” Funeral Program on September 4, 1975, at the Oakwood College Church, Huntsville, Alabama.

Phillips, Glenn O. The Making of a Christian College: Caribbean Union College, 1927-1977 (Maracas Valley, Trinidad; College Press, 1977.

“The Student Record of the East Caribbean Training School.” Royal Road, Maracas Valley, Caribbean Training School, 1928.

“William Adolphus Osborne.” Caribbean Union Gleanings, Third/Fourth Quarter, 1975.

Notes

  1. “William Adolphus Osborne,” Caribbean Union Gleanings, Third/Fourth Quarter, 1975, 7.

  2. “Obituary of Dr. William A. Osborne,” Funeral Program on September 4, 1975, at the Oakwood College Church, Huntsville, Alabama.

  3. “The Student Record of the East Caribbean Training School,” (Royal Road, Maracas Valley, Caribbean Training School, 1928), 1.

  4. Glenn O. Phillips, The Making of a Christian College: Caribbean Union College, 1927-1977 (Maracas Valley, Trinidad; College Press, 1977), 34.

  5. “William Adolphus Osborne.”

  6. “Obituary of Dr. William A. Osborne.”

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Phillips, Glenn O. "Osborne, William Adolphus (1904–1975)." Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. January 29, 2020. Accessed April 17, 2024. https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=BI1Y.

Phillips, Glenn O. "Osborne, William Adolphus (1904–1975)." Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. January 29, 2020. Date of access April 17, 2024, https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=BI1Y.

Phillips, Glenn O. (2020, January 29). Osborne, William Adolphus (1904–1975). Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. Retrieved April 17, 2024, https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=BI1Y.