Harold Anthony Wilson (February 2, 1926 - July 10, 2009)
Harold Wilson was the eighth child of Louise and Jules Wilson, who migrated to the East San Francisco Bay Area, from New Orleans, LA in the early 1900s, seeking a better life for their family, outside the harsh racism and Jim Crow laws of the southern U.S.
Harold, a lifelong resident of Oakland, CA, pursued careers as: a probation officer for Alameda County, AFL-CIO union representative, affirmative action/personnel director for Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory, and Unitarian minister.
Wilson's first marriage was to Marjorie Mitchell _________ on ____ and together they had one child, Stephanie Louise Wilson (deceased). Next he married Marjorie Foerster and together they had three children: Glenn Foerster Wilson, Pamela Louise Wilson, Deborah Wilson Cornland. Next he married Joan Blethen who served as a lifelong beloved stepmother to all of his children. Next he married Beryl [_____]. Next he married Dana Fabella, loving to and well loved by all of his children. Wilson married his sixth wife Rodica Feldman Wilson on ____. The remaining survivors of Harold A. Wilson, in addition to the children noted above, are his four grandchildren.
Wilson began his working life as a recreation assistant for a local YMCA community center. Later, as a probation officer, rising through the ranks to the position of chief probation officer of Alameda County, he had a reputation for providing assistance to his parolees in an effort to keep them out of trouble .His next position was within the juvenile division where he put the same level of effort into helping troubled teens turn their lives in a more positive direction. Wilson played a role in the establishment of halfway houses whose missions were to help ex-cons develop job skills, complete their education and become productive members of society.
For the AFL-CIO Local 390 City Employees Union Wilson served as the business representative based in the Downtown Oakland Labor Temple. Wilson represented Highland Hospital and Fairview Hospital employees through the Alameda County Central Labor Council, and also Treasure Island civilian employees.
Through his work in the Affirmative Action department of Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory, Wilson was eventually promoted to Personnel Director there.
Wilson was later inspired to obtain his Doctorate of Divinity and was ordained as a Unitarian Minister. He filled in at churches and presided over weddings. His broader focus was to make the church take responsibility for improving conditions in underserved communities.Wilson assisted in the founding of the Black Unitarian Universalist Caucus, a group comprised of ministers from across the U.S. who were trying to make the church responsive to the needs of minority communities.
A life-long learner, Wilson continued his higher education, nearly completing a PhD in [______]. He was one of the Bay Area contingent that traveled to the Birmingham/Selma Civil Rights march in the South. At times throughout his life Wilson was intently concerned with improving the lives of African American people within the West Oakland community.
Harold Wilson's first wife, Marjorie Mitchell (mother of Stephanie Louise Wilson), was tragically murdered in a famous murder crime involving both she and her employer, a druggist in downtown Oakland, CA. To date the murderer has not been identified.
Harold Anthony Wilson died at the age of 83 and is buried in Mountain View Cemetery.
Links & References
- Harold Anthony Wilson The Oakland Post Online