Graduates of Stephens-Lee during the 1960s often became trailblazers for racial integration at colleges and universities. For example, future NBA guard and North Carolina Sports Hall of Fame inductee Henry Logan became the first African American student at a public university in North Carolina, joining the team at Western Carolina in 1964. Logan remains the highest-scoring player of all time at Western Carolina.
In 1975, most of the school was demolished, leaving only the gym left standing. It is now known as the Stephens-Lee Recreation Center. In 2014, the center was renovated. It reopened in 2015 with new floors, walls, and lighting.