2023 Wall of Honor Inductee
Nominated by Gregory Gunn, the application included letters of support from over a dozen individuals whose lives had been touched by Dr. Wallace in some way throughout the years.
A gifted musician and decorated World War II Navy Veteran, Lenzy was passionate about his life's mission: to serve, inspire, and help others be successful. His vision, hard work, and commitment contributed to a long-lasting legacy that lives on to this day.
After receiving his Masters in Music Education from The Hartt School, where he was later named Alumnus of the Year, he became the Director of Music at Ellington High School in 1969.
"A man of grace and dignity...[Lenzy] WAS the music program in Ellington for several years," one letter of support shared. Noting a lack of a dedicated space for classes and rehearsals, he got the Ellington Music Boosters Club up and running and was tireless in his efforts to garner social and financial support for a new music building at EHS, which was dedicated in April of 1973 - "somebody said it couldn't be done...and he did it."
Those who knew Dr. Wallace describe him as someone who was "resilient, adaptive, curious, and brilliant...full of enthusiasm with a great sense of humor...ever positive, ever present, ever learning... dedicated musician, educator, and friend."
In addition to the hours he spent teaching during the school day, he hosted smaller vocal ensembles at his home on his own time, introducing students to new styles of music and guiding them through intricate vocal arrangements that some say they remember even now, 50 years later. The leadership and guidance he offered to his students not only made them better musicians, but it also taught them how to be resilient, tenacious, hard-working people who could make the world a better place.
In the words of the late Ruth (Ridge) Garrott regarding adding Dr. Lenzy Wallace, Jr. to Ellington's Wall of Honor, "If not that wonderful man, then who? He's the reason Ellington got through the civil rights time so gracefully. He was such a gentleman that he brought us all gently through it. He touched so many lives."
A formal induction ceremony will be held on Saturday, September 9, 2023 at 4:00 pm at the site of the Wall of Honor, located in Arbor Park [off of Main Street]. The public is invited and encouraged to attend.