Judy McDaniel Steverson was born October 11, 1945 in Boise, Idaho to William Dawson and Edna Tant McDaniel. She spent her early years in Columbus, Georgia and Dothan, Alabama before settling in Bonifay, where her father relocated to run Hoover’s Mill. It was in Bonifay where she met and married the love of her life for nearly 48 years, Paul Steverson.
Steverson placed a high value on education and attained her master’s degree in English Education from Florida State University in 1967. When Paul informed her that he just wanted to be a hog farmer and didn’t need to finish school, she informed him if that he wanted to marry her, he would be a hog farmer with a degree. . . . He got a degree . . . and became the most unlikely accountant you’d ever meet.
They moved to Tallahassee where she put her passion for education to work inspiring scores of students to follow their own fervor in life. She produced numerous award winning publications and mentored several award winning scholars during her 27 years at Leon High School.
Steverson was named Florida’s Journalism Teacher of the Year in 1988 and went on to become President of the Florida Scholastic Press Association after her retirement in 1997. In retirement, she and Paul also traveled extensively, including multiple missions trips with their church, Carmel Assembly of God. They divided the remainder of their time visiting with grandchildren in Tallahassee and Panama City and at the family farm in Bonifay.
Steverson was preceded in death by her husband Paul Steverson, her parents William Dawson and Edna Tant McDaniel, and her brother William “Bill” McDaniel.
She is survived by one son Jonathan Paul Steverson (Bevin) of Tallahassee, Florida and one daughter, Dr. Susan Steverson Hawkins (Nathanael) of Panama City, Florida; four grandchildren, Dawson and Holton Steverson of Tallahassee and Lea and Caden Hawkins of Panama City; one brother, Bobby McDaniel (Anita) of Venus, Florida; one sister, Patricia Elkins (Earl) of Lilburn, Georgia; one niece, Valerie Elkins and one nephew, Chris Elkins, both of Lilburn, Georgia. In addition, she enjoyed the love and support of many extended family members and faithful friends.
A memorial service to celebrate Steverson’s life will be held on Wednesday March 22, 2017 at Carmel Assembly of God Church, 1485 Carmel Church Road, Bonifay, Florida, 32425. Visitation will begin at 12:30 pm Central Daylight Time (CDT). The service will begin at 1:00 CDT with interment to follow immediately thereafter at the Steverson Family Farm. In lieu of Flowers, the family is requesting that any donations go to Carmel Assembly Missions.