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Reginald Dudley Forde (1940 - )

The Order of the Baobab in

Reginald Dudley Forde (1940 - ) Awarded for:
His outstanding leadership in the field of education and contribution to community service through the channels of the education system and the Boy Scout Movement of South Africa.

Profile of Reginald Dudley Forde

Mr Reginald Dudley Forde was born in Johannesburg on 20 April 1940. He completed school in Clifton School in Nottingham Road, as well as three degrees with the University of Natal. These included a B Comm, BA Hons as well as a Master’s in Philosophy of Leadership. In 1964, he was the Student of the Year at the Durban Teachers’ Training College. 

He was inspired by the principles of leadership by adults and began similar courses to train leaders among the boys in the Boy Scout Movement. The Wood Badge, which is known throughout the world, was started by Lord Baden-Powell, first Baron Baden-Powell of Gillwell, England. 

Mr Forde was headmaster at several schools in the Free State and then Natal, and was also a lecturer at his alma mater, Natal University. Throughout his entire career he inculcated strong values of leadership, discipline and commitment to young people. This was through the Boy Scout Movement of South Africa in which he became very active in the 1950s. 

From 1959, he held various positions such as Area Commissioner: KwaZulu-Natal, National Commissioner for Training South Africa and Chief Scouts Commissioner South Africa (1995 – 1999). He is well known in most spheres concerned with leadership training and has published several papers on his studies and practical work in this area. 

The immediate success of these early courses in training boys to become leaders was followed by regular successive courses, each building on gained experience, new innovative ideas and all-round improvement in standards recognising the need for scouting to keep abreast of new developments in a changing South Africa. 

An ardent sports fanatic, Mr Forde has also collected a number of awards in his long career. These include the Long Service Medal for 40 years of service to scouting, Honourable Citizen Award for Service to Education and Silver Springbok for exceptional service to scouting. 

He has been nominated for his extensive influence on the boys in various schools where he taught and in other spheres in the community. He changed his career in order to become involved in community service through the channels of the education system and the Boy Scout Movement of South Africa. 

He has proved himself to be an outstanding leader in the field of education. His Headmastership sees him through being a young, enthusiastic principal in Welkom to a maturing headmaster in Kingsway, KwaZulu-Natal, and then becoming principal of the renowned Pietermaritzburg College, the Headmaster at Durban High School and later Rector of the prestigious Michael House College in Hilton before retiring. 

We are proud to honour Mr Reginald Dudley Forde with the Order of the Baobab in Bronze in recognition of his excellent and unparalleled work in the fields of education and leadership building.