John Hawthorn was the first Headmaster of the Municipal Technical School from 1897-1924. He was born in Leicestershire and recieved his early training at the Wyggeston Schools. Hawthorn was also a graduate of Trinity College Dublin from the Honours School of Natural Science. He returned to the Wyggeston Schools as an administrator in 1895.
The plaque was made by John Morcom, teacher at the Leicester College of Art, in 1930, using a portrait for the likeness.