Carlton Hayward, 83, the former director of personnel for the Department of Commerce died Sunday of a stroke at Brook Grove Foundation in Olney.

A former railroad employee, Mr. Hayward first entered government service in 1939 as the regional director of the Railroad Retirement Board, which oversees retirement benefits for railroad employees. He represented the board in Chicago and Cleveland.

Mr. Hayward then came to Washington as director of personnel for the War Production Board in 1942. In 1945, at the conclusion of war, he joined the Department of Commerce. He became director of personnel at the Commerce department in 1953.

He retired in 1963 from the Commerce department after receiving a gold medal for distinguished service.

A native of Philadelphia, Mr. Hayward worked his way up in the Pennsylvania Railroad, beginning in 1909. He worked as a fireman, locomotive engineer and did other jobs until he became asistant chief supervisor of motive power for the railroad in the mid-1930s.

While working for the railroad he had served in the Quartermaster Corps during Work War I. He left the military as a captain.

After leaving the railroad in 1939 to begins his government career, Mr. Hayward retained his on-leave status with the railroad.

A member of the American Legion, Mr. Hayward was a 32d degree Mason, a Shriner and a member of the Kiwanis Club.

He is survived by his wife, Lena Greenland, of the home in Olney; a son, Richard, of Alexandria and a sister, Dorothy Elliott, of Pittsburgh.