Mr. Billy Ray Autry was the first teacher in the Marshall County School System to receive an AAA Certificate ( 30 hrs. above a Master's Degree). Mr. Autry worked for the Marshall County School District as a Math Teacher and also drove the buses for the Marshall County School District making a profound impact on students both inside and outside of the classroom.
Growing up in poverty, recalling being able to look down at the floor of his house as a young boy and see the chickens through the cracks, he knew all too well that education and hard work was his only way to make a better life for his family. With the guidance and help of his brother, Lawrence Autry, Billy was able to secure a loan to help him achieve his dream of becoming a Black Entrepreneur and working for himself. He worked hard, earning everything he could by picking up extra jobs at The Country Club and Nursing Home in Holly Springs. He opened up his 1st business in Holly Springs, MS, where he helped give many an opportunity for a job. Some of these businesses include: Rack N Snack, Car Wash, Courtesy One Stop, United Center, DreamLand, Roller Derby, The Octagon, The Spinning Wheel, Kiddie Land (?), Holly Springs Racetrack, Studio 93, 1st Black owner of WKRA The Change, and Serenity Funeral Homes, Inc.; Mr. Autry has always believed in ”People Helping People “, giving back to the community in which he loves and believing no matter what you accomplish in life, you never look down on the next man, but instead lend a hand to help pick them up. He didn’t look past the rough areas or alley as we called it in Holly Springs, but instead built his first business there and made some of his most treasured relationships there. Give them their Flowers while they can see them and smell them.