Frederick Drayton, Durfee class of 1955, was born in Fall River MA in 1937. He attended Lincoln Elementary, Morton Junior High and Durfee High class of '55. At Durfee, Fred distinguished himself as an excellent student and athlete, and was voted “Most Athletic” by his classmates. He was also named co-captain of the all-Bristol County football team and awarded the Jake Reagan Memorial Trophy and the Outstanding Schoolboy Achievement trophy by the Clover Club. In 1991, Fred was inducted into the Durfee Athletic Hall of Fame to accompany his brother Joe. In addition, he was a member of the Durfee Glee Club, Hilltoppers Serenaders, Senior Mixed Choir, and was sports editor of The Hilltop and the Year Book. Fred was also elected Student Mayor (of Fall River) For a Day, an experience that inspired his career.
At Bates, he was elected class Vice President and member of the Student Council. He played football and was awarded both Travelli and Puritan scholarships. Post-graduation, Fred was elected to the Bates College Board of Trustees.
Fred attended Howard University’s Graduate School, majored in Public Administration and, at first year’s end, was awarded for attaining the highest Grad School grades. He met Augusta Payne there and she would later become his wife and mother of their son, Frederick (Arnold), Jr. Out of graduate school, Fred was drafted into the Army, and served honorably two years as Platoon Guide, Honor Guard and Personnel Specialist.
Upon discharge, Fred returned to Washington, DC. Intentionally, each job he accepted had to "help people.” He was a personnel specialist with the US Department of Agriculture. Then, at the US Department of Labor, he served as Personnel Management Specialist; Manpower Development Specialist; administrative assistant to the Operational Head of the Neighborhood Youth Corp; NatIon-wide Director of several employment/training programs; Executive with the American Indian Manpower Office; National Director of the Office of Civil Rights; Executive within the Office of Equal Employment Opportunity; and finally as National Director of the Office of Safety and Health.
Fred was elected to the Labor Department Federal Credit Union’s Board of Directors. He founded and directed the DOL Mass Choir; founded and was first President of their Toastmasters’ (public speaking) Club that was widely recognized as “the first” club worldwide chartered "co-ed," an honor for which he was later awarded an “honorary” Distinguished Toastmaster (DTM) plaque. The US Civil Service Commission enlisted him into the elite cadre of Federal specialists chosen to tour the Country recruiting Management Interns, people destined to become Managers and Executives throughout the Federal Government. Labor also sent him for a one-year Internship at Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs. Fred also found time to earn a Certificate of Graduation from the Columbia School of Broadcasting. After 36 and one half years of distinguished service, he retired.
Fred became President of Drayton Communications, conducting Interpersonal Communications workshops and coaching speech. He wrote children’s stories and self-published “Boss Road: A Spiritual Journey From Job One to Retirement", a memoir documenting how God and his parents inspired and guided him from Fall River to Washington, DC. He also authored a play titled, “A Pardon for Adam and Eve” which was published in Howard University School of Religion’s Journal of Religious Thought, the only play, he was informed, ever published in that prestigious publication.
In 1995, Fred was voted "Man of the Year” by his Hemingway Memorial AME Church congregation. And in 2022, the Benjamin Mays Black Alumni Society, a Bates College affiliate, awarded him The Henry Chandler Legacy Award recognizing “a Black alumna or alumnus who paved the way for African Americans during the first 100 years of integration at Bates....” Mr. Drayton now resides in Thomasville, GA with his son and his son’s family.