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Longtime Dallas resident and teacher George Thompson Sr. is celebrating his 90th birthday with a reception on Saturday at the old gazebo in Dallas City Park at 2 p.m. The public is welcome to attend. The family requests no gifts. His actual birthday is on Aug. 28.

Thompson moved to Dallas in 1950, after graduating from Lewis and Clark College in Portland. In his first years in Dallas, Thompson taught band, chorus, and radio theory at the high school. Later, he moved to the junior high school, where he taught home room for a few years before switching to ninth-grade English. Soon, he instituted classes on journalism, speech and drama.

He also asked permission for, and was granted two periods per day to act as a counselor for students. He moved to Portland for a year to complete necessary training and received a master’s degree in counseling from the University of Oregon. The school held his position for him while he studied.

For the next two decades and more, Thompson served as a guidance counselor for Dallas Junior High School, which moved to its current location LaCreole Middle School in 1966.

A year after his retirement, the Dallas Education Association established the “George Thompson Dallas Education Association Award,” granted each year since 1989 to a graduating Dallas High School senior who plans to go into education.

Thompson presents the $2,000 award each spring at the senior awards ceremony.

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