John Allen Garwood
John Allen Garwood
Year Inducted: 2016
John Allen Garwood was born in North Wilkesboro, N.C., on July 8, 1932, to James Lemuel and Annie Lura Carrigan Garwood. He graduated from Wilkesboro High School in 1951, served in the U.S. Army 11th Airborne Division from 1953-55 and earned a Bachelor of Science in business education from Appalachian State University in 1957. He was vice president of Lineberry, Inc., until his retirement.
Garwood's ascension into politics began in 1972 when he served as the Wilkes County Finance Chair of the "Holshouser for Governor" committee. His political leadership continued as chair of the Wilkes County Republican Executive Committee from 1974-79, as a delegate to the Republican National Convention in 1980 and as Chair of the Fifth Congressional District Republican Executive Committee from 1981-83.
Garwood was elected as a Wilkes County Commissioner in 1990, serving as Chair from 1991-93. He was elected as a North Carolina Senator for the 27th District in 1996 and served the people of his district with honor and distinction from 1997-2006. He held various leadership roles throughout his General Assembly tenure, most notably as co-chair of the Education/Higher Education Committee.
Garwood's passion for North Carolina public education was evident through a lifetime of service. He was appointed to the Appalachian Board of Trustees, where he served from 1973-1980. In 1985, he was selected by the General Assembly as a representative on the University of North Carolina Board of Governors, where he served through 1996. Garwood was also a member of the Public School Forum of North Carolina, Wilkes Literacy Consortium and the Wilkes County Vocational Education Board. Garwood was awarded the "Outstanding Service Award" by Appalachian State University in 1997.
Garwood was active in several religious, fraternal and civic organizations throughout his life. He was a lifetime member and Certified Lay Speaker of the Wilkes United Methodist Church, Vice President and Secretary of the Wilkes Chamber of Commerce and Past Exalted Ruler of the North Wilkesboro Elks Lodge #1846.
Garwood was married to Wanda Bandy Garwood for more than 50 years. They had three children: John B. Garwood, David A. Garwood and Susan Garwood Robertson. They were also blessed with six grandchildren: Johnathon Garwood, Anna Garwood, Joseph Garwood, Kate Garwood, Madelyn Robertson and Liza Grace Robertson.