Herbert Leon Bryan Jr., 80, of Ashburn, VA, peacefully left this world on Tuesday, October 27, 2020, in Sterling, VA. He was born in New York, New York, on February 3, 1940, to May Rose Bryan (née Bernard) and Herbert Leon Bryan Sr. Herbert is survived by his loving and supportive wife, Janice Bryan (née Brown) of 54 years; by his five children, Danielle Brown, Leon Bryan, Nicole Bryan, Candace Bryan, Jonathan Bryan; and one brother, Bernard Bryan. He also is survived by five grandchildren, Ashlyn Brown, Madison Brown, Angelina Brown, Grace Bryan and Benjamin Bryan; numerous cousins, and many devoted friends.
Herbert was raised in Harlem before relocating with his family to Albany, New York, where his father was a Director of Records and Statistics for the State of New York. Herbert attended Albany High School and upon graduating attended Howard University in Washington, D.C. Herbert earned a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering. While in college and following in his father’s footsteps who had pledged Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. in 1929, Herbert became a brother of his beloved Alpha Phi Alpha, Fraternity, Inc. in 1960 at Beta Chapter, where he worked over the years to make a difference in the lives of youth and in the community. The legacy continued with both of his sons pledging his fraternity while they were in college.
Following college, he met his loving and devoted wife Janice, and he raised his family in Alexandria, Virginia. He worked as a patent expert within the field of electronics and technology for the United States Patent and Trademark Office for over 42 years in Crystal City, VA. Herbert’s leadership and fiduciary talents were put to great use as President of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Credit Union for six years.
From his time participating in the March on Washington in 1963 to his later educational activism, Herbert unselfishly donated his time and talents to numerous social and political organizations. Herbert was an active NAACP member for many years. After moving to Loudoun County in 1999 and retiring, Herbert continued his legacy of activism by advocating for disadvantaged and minority children in Loudoun County. Herbert was the founder and longtime chairman of the Minority Student Achievement Advisory Committee for Loudoun County Public Schools, where he led a group of parents and community leaders seeking to acknowledge and promote the needs of minority students by building a school system that is culturally and socially competent and positioned to provide fair and equitable learning experiences for all students. Herbert was laser-focused on closing the racial achievement gap and worked with school board officials to improve the scores of minority students on the Virginia Standards of Learning. Herbert received the Ann Robinson Social Justice Award by the Unitarian Universalists Church of Loudoun in 2017 for his work.
Herbert possessed a perceptive and insightful mind that complemented his enduring warmth and empathy. He was an avid fan of Washington, D.C. sport teams, traveling, and bowling, however, his undisputed favorite past time was playing bridge. While Herbert greatly enjoyed his competitive interests and hobbies, his most sacred and devoted love was his involvement in the church and the Lord’s work. Herbert was a faithful congregant of the Seventh Day Adventist Church for many years. Most recently, Herbert called the Leesburg Seventh Day Adventist church in Leesburg, VA, his church home. There he served as Head Elder and a Treasurer. He loved his family dearly and all people, as he never met a stranger he did not want to talk to.
To honor Herbert and in lieu of flowers, the family asks for donations to be sent to the Alpha Phi Alpha Education Foundation, Inc. The Alpha Phi Alpha Education Foundation, Inc. is the non-profit charitable arm of the fraternity, which focuses on scholarship, programs, and training and development of the membership. https://alphanet.apa1906.net/donations/DO04MakeDonation.aspx.
The funeral service due to COVID-19 will be held privately only for the family on November 10, 2020 and he will be laid to rest at Ketoctin Cemetery, Purcellville, VA. They will have a memorial service later in the year for the public to attend.