Clara Jane Shepherd Ahlberg,
Education Administrator, Mentor, and Pioneer in Blending Classes.
On November 18, 2013, Jane Ahlberg died peacefully at the Village in Rockville. Beloved wife of Richard C. Ahlberg,and the late Stacey E. Shepherd, mother of Mary Shepherd Cottrell (Samuel IV) and Richard A. Shepherd (Linda Wildman); grandsons Brian (deceased), Sam V (Courtney), and Andrew; great-grandchildren Sammy and Clara; and granddaughter Erin Shepherd (Carlton Crabtree); also step-children Richard Ahlberg, Robert Ahlberg, and Donna Ahlberg DeMattia (Philip) and grandson, Jack.
Born to Lela and Dolliver Hamrick, Clarksburg WV, on August 14, 1918, Jane moved with her family to Oneida, NY at the age of 12. She graduated from Syracuse University in 1940 and married Stacey Earl Shepherd the same year. Jane and Stacey eventually moved to Washington, DC, settling in Takoma Park, MD in 1952. Stacey preceded her in death in 1982. .
Jane and Richard Ahlberg were married in 1998 and lived at The Village at Rockville.
Jane was always active in her church, whether it was Emory Methodist in DC, Marvin Methodist in Silver Spring, MD, and, after marrying Richard Ahlberg in 1998, St. Luke Lutheran, also in Silver Spring.
Jane Shepherd Ahlberg began teaching elementary special education in the Montgomery County, MD, school system at Rolling Terrace Elementary School in the 1950s. After several years, she took a sabbatical and earned her Masters Degree and Doctorate classes at University of MD, returning to Montgomery County Schools as a principal, serving in several elementary schools.
At Forest Knolls Elementary, her specialty and expertise in special education enabled her to be a pioneer in blending special education students into regular classes before it was implemented system wide. She was also an early advocate for computers in the classroom.
She truly loved her students and always put them first. She retired from the school system in 1984, and was immediately hired as a consultant mentor for in-training administrators. At one point, she was proud to have mentored 25% of the elementary principals in Montgomery County.
A leader in several educational organizations, local, state and national, Jane first served as a board member in Montgomery County Education Association. She also served as secretary in the National Elementary Administrators Association. She remained active in the Retired Teachers in Montgomery County until recently, still getting together with other retired administrators. Jane was a member of Delta Kappa Gamma honorary educators fraternity.
Jane loved gardening and flowers. Singing and music gave her great joy.
She was loved by her family and many, many friends and educators in Montgomery County Maryland Schools.
Her memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. on November 30, 2013, in the chapel at The Village at Rockville, 9701 Veirs Drive, Rockville, MD 20850. Burial private.
DONATIONS IN JANE'S MEMORY may be made to the Saturday Academy, addressed to The George B. Thomas, Sr. Learning Academy @ Sligo Middle School, 1401 Dennis Avenue, Silver Spring, MD 20902 or the MCPSRA Toolkits Project, MCPS Educational Foundation, "Toolkits Project" on the memo line to Mrs. Joan Donovan, 13 Hilton Court, Gaithersburg, MD 20882-3521
Published online on Nov. 22, 2013 courtesy of RAPP Funeral and Cremation Services.