The Nation’s Largest African American Video Oral History Collection Mobile search icon Mobile close search icon
Advanced Biography Search
Mobile navigation icon Close mobile navigation icon

Marcia Cantarella

Corporate executive and school administrator Marcia Elaine Young Cantarella was born on October 31, 1946, in Minneapolis, Minnesota to Margaret Buckner Young and late civil rights leader Whitney M. Young, Jr. Cantarella attended Bryn Mawr College and graduated with honors in 1968 after earning her B.A. degree in political science. For two years, she audited American Studies and law courses at the University of Iowa before moving to New York City in 1972.

Cantarella began working for Avon Products, Inc. in public affairs as a manager, focusing on minority and women’s affairs and issues of affirmative action. In 1973, she joined the board of directors for the Federation of Protestant Welfare Agencies and became chair of the Committee for Board and Service Volunteers. A year later, Cantarella joined the Women and Foundations Group, became a member of the Association of Black Foundation Executives and joined the nomination and health maintenance organization committee for Blue Cross Blue Shield of Greater New York. She would remain active in all four organizations until 1980.

In 1976, Cantarella was promoted by Avon Products, Inc. to Director of Public Affairs, where she would remain for four more years. During her tenure, Cantarella revamped the Avon Products Foundation in order to focus on women’s issues and moved the organization past monetary donations to focus on volunteerism. In 1980, she was again promoted by Avon, becoming Director of Special Markets, where she spent two years working with minority markets.

In 1985, Cantarella left Avon Products, Inc. and became a work and family issues consultant. Her major clients included New York University and Catalyst, Inc., an organization that works to further the roles of women in the workplace. In 1988, Cantarella was named Executive Director of the National Coalition for Women’s Enterprise, a women's self-employment and advocacy organization. In 1989, Cantarella returned to school and in 1996 earned her M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in American Studies with a concentration in American Business from New York University.

Cantarella became Director of Academic Enhancement Programs at New York University at the College of Arts and Sciences. In 1999, Cantarella was named Assistant Dean of Princeton University, where she was responsible for the Mellon Minority Undergraduate Fellowship Program. In 2002, Cantarella was named Vice President for Student Affairs at the Metropolitan College of New York and in 2005, became Acting Associate Dean for Student Opportunities at Hunter College. Cantarella continues to serve in leadership roles on not-for-profit boards and committees.

Marcia Cantarella was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on April 20, 2007 and July 20, 2007.

Accession Number

A2007.152

Sex

Female

Interview Date

4/20/2007 |and| 7/20/2007

Last Name

Cantarella

Maker Category
Marital Status

Widowed

Middle Name

Young

Schools

Oglethorpe Elementary School

New Rochelle High School

University of Iowa

New York University

Simmons College

Bryn Mawr College

Lothrop Magnet Center

First Name

Marcia

Birth City, State, Country

Minneapolis

HM ID

CAN04

Favorite Season

Fall

State

Minnesota

Favorite Vacation Destination

France, Cape Cod, Massachusetts

Favorite Quote

None

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

New York

Birth Date

10/31/1946

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

New York

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Italian Food

Short Description

Foundation chief executive Marcia Cantarella (1946 - ) started her career with Avon Products, Inc. and then became executive director of the National Coalition for Women’s Enterprise. She served as the acting Associate Dean for Student Opportunities at Hunter College.

Employment

Hunter College

Metropolitan College of New York

Princeton University

New York University

National Coalition for Women's Enterprise

Avon Products, inc.

Rabat American School

Robert F. Kennedy's Office

National Urban League

Favorite Color

Green

Timing Pairs
0,0:455,7:910,13:1365,19:4277,63:5369,82:6916,112:10374,196:18748,313:24388,397:24858,403:52188,718:54738,777:60660,889:70625,1022:72005,1040:73385,1056:74765,1076:76950,1096:77640,1101:87543,1216:89867,1257:90199,1262:92772,1316:97620,1352:98324,1361:100876,1396:101228,1402:108884,1578:114756,1615:115302,1623:116316,1637:116628,1643:117408,1657:117954,1666:118422,1673:120138,1698:120684,1710:122946,1745:123336,1763:123648,1768:124038,1774:124350,1779:124974,1810:127236,1832:134618,1937:135058,1953:138795,1993:139555,2004:142215,2040:146470,2073:156348,2209:157288,2223:161142,2309:164150,2364:169696,2449:170260,2456:171200,2467:173268,2523:174208,2534:178391,2548:179636,2572:180134,2579:180549,2585:181296,2595:181877,2604:182707,2616:185446,2673:186442,2688:194110,2734:194950,2743:196510,2759:202808,2806:206820,2863$0,0:356,7:1046,19:1391,25:6948,176:12676,243:13278,251:14826,276:15514,286:16718,306:17320,314:18008,323:19040,337:26866,456:28328,479:29188,489:29704,496:40042,600:40452,606:41846,632:45846,651:46566,668:54702,835:61470,978:62622,996:68571,1007:69039,1012:69624,1018:70443,1028:75123,1121:80780,1184:81084,1189:82984,1236:84884,1277:85188,1282:85644,1290:89744,1324:93956,1381:97880,1419
DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Marcia Cantarella's interview, session 1

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Marcia Cantarella lists her favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Marcia Cantarella describes her mother's family background, pt. 1

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Marcia Cantarella describes her mother's family background, pt. 2

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Marcia Cantarella describes her father's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Marcia Cantarella remembers her paternal grandfather

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Marcia Cantarella describes her father's upbringing in Lincoln Ridge, Kentucky

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Marcia Cantarella describes how her parents met

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Marcia Cantarella describes her father's decision to pursue social work

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Marcia Cantarella describes her earliest childhood memory

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Marcia Cantarella remembers her experiences in Omaha, Nebraska

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Marcia Cantarella talks about the integrated community of Omaha, Nebraska

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Marcia Cantarella remembers the Oglethorpe School in Atlanta, Georgia, pt. 1

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Marcia Cantarella remembers the Oglethorpe School in Atlanta, Georgia, pt. 2

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Marcia Cantarella describes her father's civil rights activities in Atlanta, Georgia

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Marcia Cantarella describes segregation in Atlanta, Georgia

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Marcia Cantarella describes her father's involvement with the Unitarian church

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Marcia Cantarella talks about her family's move to Cambridge, Massachusetts

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Marcia Cantarella recalls her time in Atlanta, Georgia

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Marcia Cantarella describes her early aspirations

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Marcia Cantarella describes her family's move to New Rochelle, New York

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Marcia Cantarella describes her early involvement with the National Urban League

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Marcia Cantarella describes her decision to attend Bryn Mawr College in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Marcia Cantarella recalls her opposition to the Vietnam War

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Marcia Cantarella describes her family's opposition to the Vietnam War

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Marcia Cantarella remembers the National Urban League's Council of Board Members

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Marcia Cantarella recalls her internship with Robert F. Kennedy

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Marcia Cantarella describes her father's work with President Lyndon Baines Johnson

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Marcia Cantarella recalls her involvement in the presidential election of 1964

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Marcia Cantarella remembers the assassinations of 1968

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Marcia Cantarella recalls the civil rights organizations at Bryn Mawr College in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Marcia Cantarella describes her father's stance on equality and opportunity

Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Marcia Cantarella reflects upon the portrayal of working women in films

Tape: 4 Story: 10 - Marcia Cantarella remembers her mentors at Bryn Mawr College

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Marcia Cantarella describes her father's work in Washington, D.C.

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Marcia Cantarella reflects upon the male mentors in her life

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Marcia Cantarella describes her social life

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Marcia Cantarella describes her experiences at Bryn Mawr College in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Marcia Cantarella remembers her father's death and her divorce

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Marcia Cantarella remembers lessons from her father

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Marcia Cantarella describes how she came to work for Avon Products Inc.

Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Marcia Cantarella recalls joining Corporate America in the 1970s

Tape: 5 Story: 9 - Marcia Cantarella describes the challenges she faced at Avon Products Inc.

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Slating of Marcia Cantarella's interview, session 2

Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Marcia Cantarella describes the leadership of Avon Products Inc.

Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Marcia Cantarella describes her role at Avon Products Inc.

Tape: 6 Story: 4 - Marcia Cantarella reflects upon the changing corporate culture of the 1980s

Tape: 6 Story: 5 - Marcia Cantarella describes her work as a business consultant

Tape: 6 Story: 6 - Marcia Cantarella reflects upon the role of women in business

Tape: 6 Story: 7 - Marcia Cantarella describes her decision to attend New York University in New York City

Tape: 6 Story: 8 - Marcia Cantarella remembers Leslie Grossman and Mary Murphree

Tape: 6 Story: 9 - Marcia Cantarella describes her experiences at New York University

Tape: 6 Story: 10 - Marcia Cantarella remembers her mentors at New York University

Tape: 6 Story: 11 - Marcia Cantarella describes the Academic Achievement Program at New York University

Tape: 7 Story: 1 - Marcia Cantarella describes the influence of the Unitarian Universalist church

Tape: 7 Story: 2 - Marcia Cantarella describes her career at New York University

Tape: 7 Story: 3 - Marcia Cantarella describes her role at Princeton University in Princeton, New Jersey

Tape: 7 Story: 4 - Marcia Cantarella remembers the Audrey Cohen College in New York City

Tape: 7 Story: 5 - Marcia Cantarella describes her position at the Audrey Cohen College in New York City

Tape: 7 Story: 6 - Marcia Cantarella describe her role at New York City's Hunter College

Tape: 7 Story: 7 - Marcia Cantarella reflects upon her family's work

Tape: 7 Story: 8 - Marcia Cantarella describes the Trickle Up program, pt. 1

Tape: 8 Story: 1 - Marcia Cantarella describes the Trickle Up program, pt. 2

Tape: 8 Story: 2 - Marcia Cantarella reflects upon the status of women in business

Tape: 8 Story: 3 - Marcia Cantarella reflects upon the obstacles facing entrepreneurs of color

Tape: 8 Story: 4 - Marcia Cantarella talks about the increasing diversity in the United States

Tape: 8 Story: 5 - Marcia Cantarella reflects upon her legacy

Tape: 8 Story: 6 - Marcia Cantarella narrates her photographs

DASession

1$1

DATape

2$3

DAStory

7$8

DATitle
Marcia Cantarella describes her father's civil rights activities in Atlanta, Georgia
Marcia Cantarella recalls her opposition to the Vietnam War
Transcript
During those early years do you remember what was happening at home? Who were the people that were visiting the home?$$Um-hm.$$Was your father [Whitney Young] becoming extremely active within the southern civil rights community (simultaneous)?$$(Simultaneous) Um-hm, um-hm. We lived in a, in a sort of complex of other faculty, you know, separate homes but we were, it was a little kind of like a gated community. And one of our neighbors who was a good friend was Horace Mann, Horace Bond [Horace Mann Bond], and his son Julian, Mr. Julian Bond [HistoryMaker Julian Bond], who I thought was just adorable, (laughter) that was when I was a little girl, he was much older, and, and his brother, James [James Bond], and sister, Jane [HistoryMaker Jane Bond Moore]. Jane I adored because she gave me all her books as she, you know, out grew her books she just passed them on to me, which was wonderful. James was a pain, yeah, yeah, yeah, he was just a bother. But, you know, so, you know, my father was certainly, you know, working with that family and, and others. You know, I became aware of the fact that as, as the sit-ins started, you know, daddy wouldn't be home for dinner 'cause he was bailing students out of jail, you know. There--$$Do you remember your first sit-ins, do you remember what the conversations were at home and what your father's specific role was (unclear)?$$Not really. I mean, it's not, you know, again, I'm, I was, you know, ten or eleven (simultaneous).$$(Simultaneous) Eight, yeah, and okay.$$Yeah, so, so this was kind of all going over my head. It really wasn't until, you know, I was getting into my teens that, that he and I began to really engage and I, I began to form my own activism. So, but, you know, I was aware of the fact that there were meetings that took place.$$And that the sit-ins were happening and that your father was late--$$Right, right.$$--coming home because he was dealing with it?$$Right, exactly, exactly. But I, and, and, and the piece that I did because it, it absolutely hit home, that I remember was the boycotts because the, we weren't allowed to go to stores that we used to go to. The department (simultaneous)--$$(Simultaneous) Now when did the boycotts take place?$$The, the, the boycotts took place in, I'd say probably '55 [1955], '56 [1956] thereabouts, around lunch, lunch counters and the fact that the major department stores had segregated lunch counters. So you could shop at Rich's Department Store [Atlanta, Georgia] but you couldn't eat at Rich's Department Store. And so everyone, you know, the entire black community began to boycott the major stores. And so as a kid, you know, it was like why can't we go to that store anymore? And, and being, you know, told the reason and, and supporting the reason. So, you know, that was, that was certainly, you know, a crystallizing experience.$So the issues were civil rights and, and the war [Vietnam War]. Those were the big issues. And, so (simultaneous).$$(Simultaneous) And how did your father [Whitney Young] feel about the war?$$Well, it was interesting. He had to ride the fence because there were so many young black men fighting in the war that he couldn't really take a position. He didn't feel he could take a position overtly in opposition. So he let me be the firebrand on the war. And there was one night we were at a dinner together and he was sitting on the dais with McGeorge Bundy, and he proceeds to tell McGeorge Bundy all about what his daughter thought about the war. And after the dinner there is a reception and daddy brings McGeorge Bundy to me and introduces me as this is the person who's, you know, I was telling you well, what, what she thinks. And then daddy walks off and leaves me with McGeorge Bundy and me being all of like nineteen, continued to mouth off on my views of the war to the undersecretary of state. And many years later, my husband [Francesco Cantarella] and I met McGeorge Bundy at a dinner and reminded him of this story and McGeorge Bundy said, "And history proved you right." Very gracious of him, I must say, (laughter) it was really remarkable. But, you know, my, by this time my father trusted my judgment enough that he could throw me out there and assume that I would probably equip myself reasonably well.

Joan Sandler

Joan Delores Sandler was born on October 2, 1934 in Harlem, New York. Her mother worked as a nurse’s aide and domestic and her father was an elevator operator. Sandler was educated in New York City public schools earning her high school diploma in 1952 from the New York High School of Music and Arts.

After graduation, Sandler worked as a clerk for an insurance company. She also surrounded herself with artists and musicians, while becoming a political activist involved in the peace movement. In the early 1960s, Sandler began studying theatre with the Negro Ensemble Company and landed a role on the television drama series, Black Girl.

She began her art career in 1975, working as a program specialist for the Department of Cultural Affairs. Sandler then went on to work for the Black Theatre Alliance and Fundraising in the Public Interest. From 1983 until 1987, she worked for the Metropolitan Museum of Art where she was in charge of community education. She also worked for the National Endowment for the Arts and the Museum of American Folk Art. In 2001, Sandler served as executive director for the foundation of her longtime friend, artist Romare Bearden. The Romare Bearden Foundation continues Bearden’s visual arts legacy through community outreach and education.

Sandler continues to consult in arts education. She has worked as a lecturer and faculty member at Hunter College, New York University, Marymount College and Princeton. She has served as an advisor to many foundations and grant making organizations. Sandler has received a number of awards and honors for her contributions to arts education.

Accession Number

A2005.035

Sex

Female

Interview Date

2/2/2005

Last Name

Sandler

Maker Category
Marital Status

Divorced

Occupation
Schools

Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School of Music & Art and Performing Arts

P.S. 10 Magnet School for Science and Technology

P.S. 113 Anthony J. Pranzo

Julia Ward Howe Junior High School 81

Ps 333 Manhattan School For Children

Speakers Bureau

Yes

Speakers Bureau Availability

Depends on Schedule

First Name

Joan

Birth City, State, Country

New York

HM ID

SAN03

Speakers Bureau Preferred Audience

Adults, Seniors, Cultural Organizations and Artists

Speakers Bureau Honorarium

Yes

Favorite Season

Fall

Speaker Bureau Notes

Preferred Audience: Adults, Seniors, Cultural Organizations and Artists

State

New York

Favorite Vacation Destination

Southern Europe, Caribbean, South America

Favorite Quote

None

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

New York

Birth Date

10/2/1934

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

New York

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Soul Food, French, Italian, West Indian Food

Short Description

Arts educator Joan Sandler (1934 - ) worked for the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the National Endowment for the Arts. She was also a lecturer and faculty member at several colleges and universities.

Employment

Romare Bearden Foundation

Museum of American Folk Art

National Endowment for the Arts

The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Fundraising in the Public Interest

The Black Theater Alliance

New York City Department of Cultural Affairs

Favorite Color

Turquoise

Timing Pairs
0,0:774,10:1548,21:2494,68:12212,197:26720,312:36333,459:37152,487:37698,502:38608,520:42885,576:46434,649:48436,728:57488,788:58664,827:67680,1008:73259,1047:74365,1135:89579,1320:89983,1325:92003,1364:103680,1565$0,0:14124,344:14436,349:15138,379:20208,477:22002,542:23172,572:32866,690:33838,705:37969,792:38698,805:39265,813:39589,818:40075,825:41776,859:42667,875:43072,881:43558,889:55931,1052:56627,1062:58106,1096:59063,1121:59585,1128:62630,1188:68623,1252:69316,1271:73604,1338:74060,1350:77860,1404:78164,1409:98736,1729:101258,1761:101840,1767:102325,1774:102713,1779:103489,1788:119260,1997:119962,2007:120352,2016:120820,2053:127155,2137:130008,2158:131496,2174:136425,2287:138843,2338:149523,2509:150252,2526:152034,2567:156408,2662:167910,2790:175622,2898:176364,2906:196243,3203:216538,3519:220760,3548:222434,3568:224108,3591:224852,3600:229316,3675:233477,3719:233745,3724:234214,3732:252762,3964:254010,4027:254874,4049:257940,4080:259144,4120:260434,4203:270210,4270
DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Joan Sandlers' interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Joan Sandler lists her favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Joan Sandler describes her mother

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Joan Sandler describes her father

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Joan Sandler talks about her parents' divorce

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Joan Sandler describes her maternal grandparents

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Joan Sandler talks about her ancestry

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Joan Sandler describes her earliest childhood memory

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Joan Sandler lists her siblings

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Joan Sandler remembers holiday celebrations in her childhood

Tape: 1 Story: 11 - Joan Sandler shares stories about her mother's and her maternal aunt's experiences in Harlem, New York, New York

Tape: 1 Story: 12 - Joan Sandler shares memories of growing up in Harlem, New York, New York

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Joan Sandler talks about her mother's family history

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Joan Sandler describes rent parties at her home in Harlem, New York

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Joan Sandler describes the sights, sounds and smells of her childhood

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Joan Sandler remembers a special Christmas with her mother

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Joan Sandler describes her elementary and junior high school experiences in New York, New York

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Joan Sandler describes living with family in Rocky Mount, North Carolina after her parents' separation

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Joan Sandler talks about her stepfather, Willis Hunter

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Joan Sandler recalls her interests at Julia Ward Howe Junior High School 81 and The High School of Music and Art in New York, New York

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Joan Sandler talks about listening to radical street orators in Harlem, New York, New York

Tape: 2 Story: 10 - Joan Sandler talks about her early adult life in Harlem, New York, New York

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Joan Sandler talks about the early years of her marriage to Alvin Sandler

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Joan Sandler talks about Louis E. Burnham's influence on her life

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Joan Sandler talks about her friendship with Lorraine Hansberry

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Joan Sandler describes living in Mexico with her family

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Joan Sandler remembers the political atmosphere of New York, New York in the 1960s

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Joan Sandler describes her work with the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Joan Sandler recalls her work with the Black Theatre Alliance and acting career

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Joan Sandler remembers developments in African American art from the 1960s to 1980s

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Joan Sandler describes the effects of political activism on her family life

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Joan Sandler describes her work as an artists' model and promoting black films

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Joan Sandler talks about working at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, New York

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Joan Sandler describes changes in the black art world in the 1980s

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Joan Sandler talks about her work as a regional representative for the National Endowment for the Arts

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Joan Sandler talks about consulting for arts foundations and museums

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Joan Sandler talks about growth in the black filmmaking and the need for developing black theatre

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Joan Sandler describes the purpose of an artist-based foundation

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Joan Sandler talks about her goals and plans for the Romare Bearden Foundation in New York, New York

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Joan Sandler talks about challenges for contemporary African American artists

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Joan Sandler talks about her daughters, Eve and Kathe Sandler, and their careers

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Joan Sandler reflects upon her life

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Joan Sandler reflects upon the importance of history

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Joan Sandler describes how she would like to be remembered

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Joan Sandler shares her memories of Paul Robeson

Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Joan Sandler recalls James Baldwin's final days

Tape: 5 Story: 9 - Joan Sandler reflects upon her legacy

Tape: 5 Story: 10 - Joan Sandler describes her hopes for the African American community

Tape: 5 Story: 11 - Joan Sandler describes her hopes for the future

Tape: 5 Story: 12 - Joan Sandler narrates her photographs, pt. 1

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Joan Sandler narrates her photographs, pt. 2

DASession

1$1

DATape

2$4

DAStory

4$3

DATitle
Joan Sandler remembers a special Christmas with her mother
Joan Sandler talks about working at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, New York
Transcript
Tell me a little bit about the Christmas with no ornaments.$$Yeah. That was the building, yeah, before we moved to 113th Street [New York, New York]. And, I guess I was ten years old around that time, maybe a little older. And, we knew it was Christmas and we knew there was not a gift in the house. And, no special foods 'cause normally there would be that. There was just a very poor Christmas. And, my mother [Mary Wade Alexander] had a boyfriend at that time and either he was still with his family and coming back and forth, or he just wasn't present. And, we had nothing. And, my mother said--and, I guess we were just sort of walking around, you know, just looking sad but not complaining loud, but my mother saw that. And, she just took all these magazines and pieces of paper and she made all these wonderful things by hand. And, she got us involved in making it. And, my brothers tell the same story. They were smaller than me at the time. And, she just had this incredible spirit and magic about her that she could pull us from the dust bin really, and make, make Christmas. And, all--so these decoration were handmade. My mother was very good with her hands. She was a great seamstress, and she was a great cook, and she, she just had this creative spirit. And, it's a Christmas--and we had just about enough food in the house at that time. And, it's a Christmas I and my brothers, when we get together, we talked about it. But, now my older brothers have passed away, but they remembered it very well. And, they remember her spirit.$Let's talk about your work at the Metropolitan Museum of Art [(The Met), New York, New York].$$Yeah. I was trying to remember where I was just before I went to The Met. Let me get this story straight, now (simultaneous).$$(Simultaneous) You were at Fundraising in the Public Interest.$$Yeah, Fundraising--I guess I did go straight to The Met from there. In fact, the position that was created before I went there, my dear friend Herb Scott-Gibson [Herbert Scott-Gibson] was working for them. And, it were called [Department of] Community Education. There was a whole education department that was devoted to non--all the stuff The Met had not done for years. It was making the museum accessible for people in wheelchairs. It was bringing in community groups if you live--coming to the gallery; was working with senior citizens. I had about, it was in that department about four or five places for people. Also, doing bilingual lecturers and that kind of thing. I think I mentioned that. But, my friend Herb Scott-Gibson who had that job for about two years passed away. And, he was a good friend of mine. He passed away and, and it was rather shocking. And, then I--someone from The Met called me and said, you know, "They're looking for someone, would you come in and interview for it?" I must have known at least a dozen people from around the country--no, didn't know who they were, in some cases I knew them; who interviewed for it. And, I, you know, I was interested in the job certainly but it was always fascinating to me that when Philippe de Montebello said, "She's the one" (laughter). So, I said, "Okay, not bad, not bad." I was told that much later by people who sat in on the interview. So, I was there for I guess close to four years with a very exciting department. A couple of snakes in the grass who tried to, you know, bite my ankles off and that kind of thing.$$(Laughter).$$And, but we did a lot of wonderful things and as a result I was able to also bring musicians into the museum, like Randy Weston and people like that; have an afternoon talk between Romare Bearden and [HistoryMaker] Richard Long, have those ki- that caliber of people there. The head of the Museo [de Arte de Puerto Rico] in [Santurce] Puerto Rico, the head of the culture institutions there would come. And, we'd do whole wonderful talks in Spanish. And, I asked to Philippe to introduce them, 'cause Philippe spoke Spanish even though he's, he's French, he spoke wonderful Spanish. And, he would, you know, some of the scholars he knew. So, I was able to just move into a lot of different directions with enormous resources. And, then, then things got a little tight there and a little funny 'cause I was also very much a favorite, not just by Philippe but also by the president of the museum, Bill Macomber [William B. Macomber Jr.]. And, and then the last thing I did there working with my neighbor who has a Ph.D. from Harvard [University, Cambridge, Massachusetts], I did a study on the needs and the patterns of professionals of color and art museums in America. And, I had mostly--focusing actually on the northeast and maybe the mid, mid-Atlantic states, yeah, down passed Washington [D.C.].$$What did you discover in your study (simultaneous)?$$(Simultaneous) Well, I discovered that art museums are the hardest places to work in, in that you're--the, being accepted and considered on the par as your white counterpart, even if you might come in with all the degrees and everything, that never happened. Art museums adjusted poorly and slowly to what was the changing population on many levels. Not just in the program area but in the hiring practices and that kind of thing. We found that museums that weren't, even though they weren't a part of the study that were like science museum, natural history museum, historical societies were a little more open to, to diversity. And, to diversity among professionals and encouraging that. It was, it was an interesting study. It was used for a long time in a lot of situations, and it was, it was known all over the country. And, I was active in the museum professional associations, and that kind of thing. And, then that was the last thing I did and that was my last year at The Met.