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Pamelya Herndon

Lawyer and nonprofit chief executive Pamelya Herndon was born on November 23, 1952 in Hempstead, Texas to Kathryn and Daniel Norris Herndon. She graduated from Roy Miller High School in 1971, and earned her bachelor’s degree in business administration with a focus in accounting from Howard University in 1975. Herndon then attended the University of Texas Law School where she received her J.D. degree in 1978.

Herndon married fellow lawyer, Alfred Mathewson, in 1978, and the two moved to Denver, Colorado where she worked for a major accounting firm. She was then hired by the Internal Revenue Service as a senior litigation attorney. In 1983, Herndon and her husband moved to Albuquerque, New Mexico, where Herndon continued to work for the IRS until she was appointed by Attorney General Patricia Madrid to serve in New Mexico’s Litigation Division in 1998. Here, she provided legal representation to state officials and agencies until 2006, before being appointed general counsel for the State Regulation and Licensing Department of New Mexico. In this position, Herndon supervised and managed the legal bureau of the Regulation and Licensing Department, as well as provided advice to the Office of the Superintendent. She remained here until 2009, when she became deputy cabinet secretary for New Mexico’s General Services Department, overseeing the administration of the government agency which housed the Risk Management, Building Services, Property Control, Transportation Services, and Administrative Services Divisions. In February of 2011, Herndon became managing partner of Herndon Legal Services, and served until October of that year. She was then hired by the Southwest Women’s Law Center in 2012 to work as their executive director until October 2018 when she founded the KWH Law Center for Social Justice and Change and became their president and CEO. Herndon also taught courses on the main campus and in the law school of the University of New Mexico. She also helped train paralegals and legal secretaries at Brookline College in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Herndon was elected as a member of the New Mexico Electoral College in 2008, is a member of the Albuquerque chapter of the American Association of University Women, and Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated, and has served on the boards of Emerge New Mexico, the African American Performing Arts Center Foundation, the Con Alma Health Foundation, and the United States Eagle Federal Credit Union. She has also received numerous awards for her work as a lawyer, including the 2012 Public Lawyer of the Year, presented by the Public Law Section of the New Mexico State Bar, the 2015 Lawyer of the Year, presented by the Albuquerque Bar Association, and she was named as a W.K. Kellogg Fellow in 2019. Herndon is also a Certified Public Accountant.

Herndon resides in Albuquerque, New Mexico with her husband, and they have three adult children: Eryn, Amber, and Justin.

Pamelya Herndon was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on July 26, 2019.

Accession Number

A2019.068

Sex

Female

Interview Date

7/26/2019

Last Name

Herndon

Maker Category
Marital Status

Married

Schools

Charles W. Crossley Elementary School

Roy Miller High School

Howard University

University of Texas at Austin School of Law

First Name

Pamelya

Birth City, State, Country

Hempstead

HM ID

HER06

Favorite Season

The Time Between The End Of Summer And Beginning Of Fall

State

Texas

Favorite Vacation Destination

London, Corpus Christi, and Portugal

Favorite Quote

There Is Nothing That You Can Imagine That You Cannot Do

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

New Mexico

Birth Date

11/23/1952

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Albuquerque

Favorite Food

Fried Corn

Short Description

Lawyer and nonprofit chief executive Pamelya Herndon (1953 - ) worked for the State of New Mexico for thirteen years before serving as director of the Southwest Women’s Law Center, and later becoming the founding president and CEO of the KWH Law Center for Social Justice and Change.

Employment

KWH Law Center for Social Justice and Change

Southwest Women's Law Center

Herndon Legal Services

State of New Mexico; General Services Department

State of New Mexico; Regulation and Licensing Department

New Mexico Attorney General's Office

IRS; Department of Treasury

Deloitt, Haskins & Sells

Favorite Color

Purple

The Honorable William E. Ward

History professor, political organizer, and mayor The Honorable William E. Ward was born on December 1, 1933 in Virginia to Annie Ward. Ward earned his B.A. degree in history in 1957 and his M.A. degree in history in 1960 from Virginia State University. He also earned both his M.A. and Ph.D degrees in American and African history in 1972 and 1977, respectively, from Clark University.

In 1963, Ward moved to Chesapeake where he began his public life as a grass-roots political organizer, helping to bring sewer and roads to poorer neighborhoods in Chesapeake and Norfolk. Between 1973 and 2000, he worked as a professor at Norfolk State University where he served as a professor and the chair of the history department. He was also the president of the Faculty Senate at Norfolk State University between 1975 and 1977 and chaired the Black History Month committee for the Faculty Senate of Virginia Benefits and Senate Grievance committees. In addition, Ward was a member of the college-wide Council of Teacher Education. In 1978, Ward ran for the Chesapeake City Council and was declared a winner forty-eight hours after having been declared a loser, when 123 uncounted votes were located. He was elected Vice Mayor under Mayor David I. Wynne between 1984 and 1986, and also in 1988 and 1990. Ward was then appointed as the city’s first black mayor in 1990 after Wynne faced allegations of fraud. Ward ran for re-election in 1992 and won and in 1996, Ward ran for re-election and defeated Republican challenger John Cosgrove, earning fifty-five percent of the vote and serving until 2004. Ward was Chesapeake’s longest serving mayor.

Ward was appointed to the Board of Visitors at Virginia State University in 2003 by Governor Mark Warner and in 2008 became a board member of the university. In addition, he served as the Executive Director of the Hampton Roads Partnership, Hampton Roads Economic Development Alliance, Hampton Roads Planning District Commission, and Southeastern Public Service Authority. Additional past professional affiliations include the Virginia Society for History Teachers, the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History, the Southern Historical Association, the American Historical Association and the Virginia Social Sciences Association. Ward also served as the chairman of the Chesapeake Hurricane Katrina Relief Task Force.

Ward lived in Virginia and was married to Rose M. Ward. He was also the father of son, Michael, and daughter, Michelle.

Ward passed away on July 10, 2018.

William Ward was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on May 12, 2010.

Accession Number

A2010.014

Sex

Male

Interview Date

5/12/2010

Last Name

Ward

Marital Status

Married

Middle Name

E.

Schools

Virginia State University

Clark University

Bluestone Harmony Academic and Industrial School

Central High School

University of Ghana

First Name

William

Birth City, State, Country

Lunenburg County

HM ID

WAR13

Favorite Season

Fall, Spring

State

Virginia

Favorite Vacation Destination

New England

Favorite Quote

Epitaph: Public Servant

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Virginia

Birth Date

12/1/1933

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Chesapeake

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Steak

Death Date

7/10/2018

Short Description

History professor, political organizer, and mayor The Honorable William E. Ward (1933 - 2018 ) was a professor and the chair of the history department at Norfolk State University. Ward was appointed as the first African American and longest serving mayor of Chesapeake, Virginia in 1990.

Employment

Norfolk State University (Va).

I.C. Norcom High School (Portsmouth, Va).

B. Altman & Co.

Charles Hamilton Houston Junior High School

Rosemont Junior High School

City of Chesapeake

Favorite Color

Blue

Timing Pairs
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DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of The Honorable William E. Ward's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - The Honorable William E. Ward lists his favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - The Honorable William E. Ward describes his mother's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - The Honorable William E. Ward talks about his siblings

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - The Honorable William E. Ward describes how he lost his eye as a child

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - The Honorable William E. Ward describes his earliest childhood memories

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - The Honorable William E. Ward talks about the Bluestone Harmony Academic and Industrial School in Keysville, Virginia

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - The Honorable William E. Ward describes the sights, sounds and smells of his childhood

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - The Honorable William E. Ward describes his childhood personality

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - The Honorable William E. Ward remembers the notable African American athletes of his youth

Tape: 1 Story: 11 - The Honorable William E. Ward recalls listening to the radio as a child

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - The Honorable William E. Ward remembers listening to the party line in Keysville, Virginia

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - The Honorable William E. Ward describes his experiences at the Bluestone Harmony Academic and Industrial School

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - The Honorable William E. Ward describes the all-black public school in Lunenburg County, Virginia

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - The Honorable William E. Ward recalls his classes at Central High School in Charlotte Court House, Virginia

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - The Honorable William E. Ward remembers his elementary and high school teachers

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - The Honorable William E. Ward talks about the lack of black press in Keysville, Virginia

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - The Honorable William E. Ward describes his decision to attend Virginia State College in Petersburg, Virginia

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - The Honorable William E. Ward recalls his experiences at Virginia State College

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - The Honorable William E. Ward talks about the history of Petersburg, Virginia

Tape: 2 Story: 10 - The Honorable William E. Ward talks about the civil rights activities in Virginia

Tape: 2 Story: 11 - The Honorable William E. Ward remembers the visiting speakers at Virginia State College

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - The Honorable William E. Ward talks about his early work experiences

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - The Honorable William E. Ward describes his early civil rights involvement

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - The Honorable William E. Ward recalls the civil rights activities at Norfolk State University in Norfolk, Virginia

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - The Honorable William E. Ward remembers the assassination of Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - The Honorable William E. Ward describes his role as campaign manager for two minority Chesapeake City Council candidates

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - The Honorable William E. Ward describes his summer abroad at the University of Ghana in Accra, Ghana

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - The Honorable William E. Ward remembers studying at the University of the West Indies in Kingston, Jamaica

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - The Honorable William E. Ward recalls his congressional campaign in 1972

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - The Honorable William E. Ward remembers serving as a delegate at the 1976 Democratic National Convention

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - The Honorable William E. Ward talks about his campaign for the Chesapeake City Council

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - The Honorable William E. Ward describes how he became mayor of Chesapeake, Virginia

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - The Honorable William E. Ward talks about politics in the State of Virginia

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - The Honorable William E. Ward describes his tenure as mayor of Chesapeake, Virginia

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - The Honorable William E. Ward recalls the racial issues he handled while mayor of Chesapeake, Virginia

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - The Honorable William E. Ward talks about his mayoral and city council campaigns

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - The Honorable William E. Ward describes how he juggled his two careers

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - The Honorable William E. Ward talks about his family

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - The Honorable William E. Ward describes his organizational involvement

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - The Honorable William E. Ward reflects upon his tenure as mayor of Chesapeake, Virginia, pt. 1

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - The Honorable William E. Ward reflects upon his life

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - The Honorable William E. Ward recalls his conflict with Congressman Tom DeLay

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - The Honorable William E. Ward describes his hopes and concerns for the African American community

Tape: 5 Story: 8 - The Honorable William E. Ward talks about the trial of Lee Boyd Malvo

Tape: 5 Story: 9 - The Honorable William E. Ward reflects upon his tenure as mayor of Chesapeake, Virginia, pt. 2

Tape: 5 Story: 10 - The Honorable William E. Ward describes how he would like to be remembered

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - The Honorable William E. Ward narrates his photographs, pt. 1

Tape: 6 Story: 2 - The Honorable William E. Ward narrates his photographs, pt. 2

DASession

1$1

DATape

4$4

DAStory

3$6

DATitle
The Honorable William E. Ward talks about his campaign for the Chesapeake City Council
The Honorable William E. Ward describes his tenure as mayor of Chesapeake, Virginia
Transcript
And I ran for city council, I think, in '74 [1974]. That's where I'm getting, getting my--$$Okay (simultaneous).$$--(simultaneous) my dates are a little confused here.$$So, that was prior to working with the--$$Prior to the convention [1976 Democratic National Convention, New York, New York].$$Yeah.$$Yeah. Prior to the convention, I ran for city council, and I lost that by five hundred votes, and so forth. So I said, "Well, I'm not gonna run for anything else again." Spent all of my time concentrating on my work at Norfolk State [Norfolk State College; Norfolk State University, Norfolk, Virginia], and so forth. For the next two or three years, I helped to get Clarke and Owens [Hugo A. Owens, Sr.] reelected and kind of took a back seat. But then in '77 [1977] Clarke died and, and we [Chesapeake Men for Progress; New Cheesecake Men for Progress, Chesapeake, Virginia] worked to get somebody appointed to finish his term. His wife agreed to do that, so for a year or year and a half, Mrs. Clarke [Florine R. Clarke] served as the council appointed replacement for her husband, William Clarke [W.P. Clarke, Sr.]. So, in '78 [1978], she said, "I'm not gonna run again," and that's when we all looked around and said, "Well, Bill Ward [HistoryMaker William E. Ward], you gotta be the one. You gotta go for that seat. We gotta keep the two blacks on council." So I ran in 1978, had already created the model for the most part, and that is you work with your base, work with the black churches and the black neighborhood bosses, and so forth. And haven't been active in the Democratic committee over the next--over the previous seven or eight years. I had gained some white support like that. And so on election day in '78 [1978], I came in sixth, with the five, five seats, five vacancies on that--at that time. And when they counted the votes on election night, Bill Ward came in number six, and everybody said, "We thought you were gonna win." And I wasn't that far, I forgot how many votes I was behind. Two days later when they counted the votes in the official canvas, they discovered at one precinct that at one machine, votes had not been counted for Bill Ward. So, they found 123 votes at a southern city--near the southern precinct in the southern part of Chesapeake [Virginia] and moved me from the sixth place loser to a third place finisher. And so I was declared after a recount and all that, to be the winner, which knocked off one of the white winners by--and his closest competition had been about two votes or something like that. So anyway, I was finally elected to Chesapeake City Council in 1978, and served in that capacity as a councilmember until October 1990, when I became mayor. So, during the twelve years as a councilmember, I began to build up some support, you know, in the larger community working with the mayors at that time, and all the mayors were Democratic mayors and councils were primarily the Democratic council. Chesapeake didn't begin to shift until the '90s [1990s] to become a Republican city and now it's primarily Republican controlled.$The 1970s was an exciting decade where things began to stabilize. And in the, in the '80s [1980s]--here again, Chesapeake [Virginia] began to grow in the '80s [1980s], began to attract multinational businesses, residential units were come in, popping up. The population was growing at 3 and 4 and 5 percent, and then when I became mayor in 1990 for the next ten years, during my tenure, we continued to expand. I began to travel internationally and nationally to attract multinational businesses. I spent several trips into Japan, which was very lucrative for us, also in Europe and other parts of Asia, Taiwan, wherever we could--and also in this country, also I did a lot of travel. So all of this began to add to my persona as an aggressive weak mayor in a sense, and we were able to get some things done. We were able to get federal funding and approve and upgrade some of the old black neighborhoods, old traditional Chesapeake, rural Chesapeake, which was a county until '63 [1963]. Had two populations, us and them. And the us, the black people, all lived in little villages throughout the city, and so we didn't begin to integrate the city until the early '70s [1970s], and today it's much harder to determine your base if you're dependent solely on your black base, because it's no longer restricted to these, quote villages, just because it's a highly integrated city. There's 354 square miles, we have fifty-five voting precincts, black people live everywhere, all candidates, all officials are elected at large. I was always elected at large, never from a ward system, never from a precinct system. And that's the interesting part about my political life is that the demographics of Chesapeake has always remained stable, about 22 or 23 percent African American and 77, 76, 77, 78 percent majority race. So, for any candidate or any person, and any minority candidate to win, he or she must be able to build bridges, and that was one of my campaign themes, building bridges. Another one was promises made, promises kept. So, I always try to represent all the people, and in the neighborhoods, you know, I was always there. Wherever invited, I would appear; white churches, black churches, and ultimately I developed a good support base in the white churches. I had five white ministers who would meet with me on a monthly basis to pray once a month in my office. We would meet and they would pray with me, for me. And the National Day of Prayer, I had no problem in participating in that and taking on leadership in that, and, so and then I established a sister cities program, which got us into Brazil. I've been in and out of Brazil four, five, six, seven times, and we have a sister city in southern Brazil, in Joinville and Santa Catarina state. As a result of my first trip to Brazil, which was a business trip, I was able to bring Varga Brakes [TRW Brakes Brazil] to the City of Chesapeake. First trip to Japan I was able to bring Yupo [Yupo Corporation], which is a large Japanese Company. Oji-Yuka paper company [Oji-Yuka Synthetic Paper Company; Yupo Corporation], $100 million investment. So, you'll see some of the pictures I have here on the back table, the governors of Virginia, particularly George Allen. The Republican governor always came down and presented me a big check, a state incentive, a state investment check to bring a business here. So these are the kinds of exciting things that we were able to do during, during my tenure.

The Honorable Lucille Whipper

Academic administrator and state government administrator Lucille Simmons Whipper was born on June 6, 1928 in Charleston, South Carolina, to Sarah and Joseph Simmons. In 1944, Whipper was a student activist at her high school, Avery Institute, in Charleston, South Carolina; her graduating class sought to desegregate the College of Charleston. While a student at Talladega College, where she received her B.A. degree in economics and sociology, Whipper became involved in a movement to integrate college student organizations throughout the state. Whipper continued her graduate education in political science at the University of Chicago where she received her M.A. degree. Whipper also later earned a certificate in guidance and counseling at South Carolina State University.

In the late 1960s, Whipper served as an organizer and director of Operation Catch-Up, a tutorial program for high school students; Operation Catch-Up was a forerunner of the Upward Bound programs. In 1972, Whipper was appointed to serve as Assistant to the President and Director of the Office of Human Relations at the College of Charleston. Whipper became the College’s first African American administrator and developed its first affirmative action plan. With the support of members of the Charleston County delegation and the President of College of Charleston, Theodore Stern, Whipper organized the Avery Institute of Afro-American History and Culture committee. The committee then founded the Avery Research Center for African American History and Culture in 1990.

Whipper served as vice chairman of the Democratic Party Convention in 1972 and was later elected to the Charleston District 20 School Board. In 1985, Whipper became the first African American female to serve as an elected state official from the Tri-County area. Whipper served for years on South Carolina Human Affairs Commission and sponsored two important pieces of legislation — one making marital rape a crime and the other requiring the monitoring of state agencies' hiring goals for minorities and females. In 2004, Whipper co-founded the Lowcountry Aid to Africa project, donating money to foundations and organizations helping people and families in Africa affected by AIDS.

Lucille Simmons Whipper was married to the late Rev. Dr. Benjamin J. Whipper, Sr., and lives in Mt. Pleasant, South Carolina. She is the mother of six children and is a grandparent.

Lucille Simmons Whipper was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on February 1, 2007.

Accession Number

A2007.039

Sex

Female

Interview Date

2/1/2007

Last Name

Whipper

Maker Category
Marital Status

Widow

Schools

Avery Normal Institute

Talladega College

University of Chicago

South Carolina State University

Burke High School

Buist Academy

St. Stephen's Episcopal Church School

Speakers Bureau

No

First Name

Lucille

Birth City, State, Country

Charleston

HM ID

WHI11

Favorite Season

Spring

State

South Carolina

Favorite Vacation Destination

None

Favorite Quote

None

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

South Carolina

Birth Date

6/6/1928

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Charleston

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Chocolate

Short Description

State government administrator and academic administrator The Honorable Lucille Whipper (1928 - ) served as the organizer and director of Operation Catch-Up, the vice chairman of the Democratic Convention in 1972, a member of the South Carolina Human Affairs Commission, and the first African American administrator at the College of Charleston.

Employment

College of Charleston

Charleston County Public Schools

Charleston Public Schools

South Carolina. General Assembly. House of Representatives

Favorite Color

Green, Pink

Timing Pairs
0,0:1715,20:2475,29:5705,101:6275,108:27965,363:38260,417:40052,430:54528,531:55149,541:63370,627:64358,642:66106,699:67398,722:73022,822:83950,964:89930,1081:97630,1148:111817,1270:112303,1277:112627,1282:117898,1318:118780,1329:119172,1334:124350,1357:135492,1458:136164,1467:141120,1572:141624,1579:150620,1643:162456,1740:183775,1973:185500,2004:205030,2198:205758,2207:206486,2216:208215,2238:209307,2252:209853,2259:212401,2299:213038,2307:215040,2338:219712,2352:220576,2362:221008,2367:221872,2381:224198,2386:229685,2458:230702,2468:236013,2556:241500,2594:265846,2829:267106,2842:271642,2901:272230,2909:275470,2915:276172,2927:277108,2941:277576,2948:277888,2953:278200,2958:284128,3030:284752,3042:285766,3057:286780,3075:295944,3147:300960,3191$0,0:5408,49:7696,77:8736,86:9152,92:24446,218:24774,223:25676,237:26004,242:26988,251:27562,259:45358,549:45826,556:46450,566:51442,666:58310,740:58610,745:59135,753:63710,837:64310,846:75832,928:76197,934:76562,940:80139,1012:83140,1027:84376,1039:95345,1149:100538,1230:101126,1243:107610,1341:125674,1581:126064,1587:127624,1611:129106,1638:129964,1650:130510,1658:131056,1670:131914,1686:143612,1866:144020,1873:144700,1888:148168,1965:149936,2007:150344,2014:151092,2031:152792,2066:158544,2094:168606,2298:169230,2307:193980,2521:194320,2526:200440,2612:206140,2648:212230,2773:216360,2855:229564,3010:230032,3020:241810,3167:242960,3179:247600,3222
DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of The Honorable Lucille Whipper's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper lists her favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper describes her mother's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper remembers her parents' parties

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper recalls her mother's occupation

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper recalls her mother's involvement in the church

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper describes her father's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper describes how her parents met

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper describes her stepfather's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper remembers her sister

Tape: 1 Story: 11 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper describes the sights, sounds and smells of her childhood

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper remembers the Great Depression

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper describes her early education

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper remembers St. Stephen's Episcopal Church School in Charleston, South Carolina

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper describes the Buist School in Charleston, South Carolina

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper describes her early interests

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper recalls her experiences in high school

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper describes the color discrimination at the Avery Normal Institute in Charleston, South Carolina

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper recalls her college aspirations

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper remembers her mentors at the Avery Normal Institute

Tape: 2 Story: 10 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper remembers discrimination at the College of Charleston in Charleston, South Carolina

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper remembers her high school graduation

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper remembers Talladega College in Talladega, Alabama

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper recalls joining Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper describes her early civil rights activism

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper recalls her social life at Talladega College in Talladega, Alabama

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper remembers her husband, Stephen Edley

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper remembers attending the University of Chicago

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper recalls teaching at the Haut Gap School on Johns Island, South Carolina

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper describes her husband, Benjamin Whipper, Sr.

Tape: 3 Story: 10 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper talks about the Gullah language

Tape: 3 Story: 11 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper talks about racial discrimination

Tape: 3 Story: 12 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper remembers the birth of her daughter

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper describes the A Better Chance program

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper recalls her challenges at Bonds-Wilson High School

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper remembers school segregation in South Carolina

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper remembers her involvement in the Civil Rights Movement

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper describes Operation Catch-Up

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper recalls her position at the College of Charleston in Charleston, South Carolina

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper remembers Margaretta Pringle Childs

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper recalls her efforts to preserve the Avery Normal Institute, pt. 1

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper recalls her efforts to preserve the Avery Normal Institute, pt. 2

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper describes the Avery Research Center for African American History and Culture

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper recalls her first elected office

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper remembers her election as a state legislator

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper describes her committee involvement

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper recalls serving on the South Carolina Human Affairs Commission

Tape: 5 Story: 8 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper recalls her challenges as a legislator

Tape: 5 Story: 9 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper remembers the South Carolina Legislative Black Caucus

Tape: 5 Story: 10 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper talks about gerrymandering

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper describes her decision not to seek reelection

Tape: 6 Story: 2 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper recalls mentoring David J. Mack, III

Tape: 6 Story: 3 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper describes her work with The Links, Incorporated

Tape: 6 Story: 4 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper describes her presidency of the state women's Baptist convention

Tape: 6 Story: 5 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper reflects upon her life

Tape: 6 Story: 6 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper share a message to future generations

Tape: 6 Story: 7 - The Honorable Lucille Whipper narrates her photographs

DASession

1$1

DATape

4$5

DAStory

5$5

DATitle
The Honorable Lucille Whipper describes Operation Catch-Up
The Honorable Lucille Whipper remembers her election as a state legislator
Transcript
You participated in tutorial program for black children in Charleston County [South Carolina]?$$Yeah during Johnson's [President Lyndon Baines Johnson], I think I was then at Burke [Burke High School, Charleston, South Carolina].$$Okay.$$During the War on Poverty when, what, what they call equal opportunity commissions or something under the War on Poverty the county was granted money to establish commissions for programs for economic and educational opportunity and Charleston County established the OEO, I think you call it, Office of Economic Opportunity, and they had the various programs. They established Head Start programs. Our church in the city, my husband's [Benjamin Whipper, Sr.] church, was one of the first to have a Head Start program.$$What church was this?$$St. Matthew--$$Matthew okay.$$--Baptist Church [St. Matthew Baptist Church, North Charleston, South Carolina].$$Okay.$$'Cause I went to all of the community meetings and so forth to find out. At least I was keeping up with the program as it was developing through [U.S.] Congress and so I was well aware of what, what purposes it could serve and so forth and I was focusing on what could be done as far as education was concerned. And so when they established the OEO office I knew the people that were on the commission and even the people who were staffing and together, besides the Head Start program that they started and one was at my church, we wrote a proposal for a tutorial program. I was still impressed by the ABC program [A Better Chance] and what they did in the summer and things like that, so we established what we called Operation Catch-Up, which was sort of the beginning of the Upward Bound idea of working with students and enrichment program in the summer and then tutoring them during the school year. And so we established Operation Catch-Up that worked in the county, worked throughout the county. It was most, in the summer we had a summer program, I think the first summer program was at my church, St. Matthew. Again, I got the church involved all these things, and then the next year we were at the Catholic school and I think one year we were at Burke one summer. And we employed graduate students from the northeastern universities, became faculty, and that created a lot of stir because they lived in the homes of the students, and there was some negative new, news stories about that, you know these white--$$White.$$--graduate students living in black homes, and then the curriculum, 'Lord of the Flies' [William Golding], and all of that stuff coming down with all that, that type of curriculum. So, we got some negatives on that score, and I directed that project and gave it up, I forgot when. I think I probably gave it up when I moved to the College of Charleston [Charleston, South Carolina]. But, that program really identified a lot of students and assisted them into college being ready to go into just any school that they wanted to go into. It was a very enriching experience for them, and we expanded it throughout the county and we had stations for tu, tutoring and homework throughout the county of, in the city and in the various areas of the county.$So what happens next?$$The next thing was that I thought I was living in the district that, where a vacancy occurred. We'd gone to single member districts, okay, the state, and the representative for District 109 had been indicted with some charges, federal charges, and was it federal or state charges, that's Representative Woods [Robert Roosevelt Woods]. He had become very powerful, chaired the Ways and Means Committee [House Ways and Means Committee] in the state, as with blacks we always, always say when you get to have certain power you better watch out because somebody is waiting to get you on maybe some charge you never even thought about. He was a minister and had, I think he had a Head Start, if not a Head Start he had some federal program and so they threw all of that into whatever they charged him with. So, the district became vacant and I thought that I lived, I did not look at the boundaries, I was about three blocks outside of when I decided that I was gonna run with my husband's permission and enthusiasm, family, everybody yeah go for it. So, I had to move into the district. We built that house, and I was a few blocks outside of the district. And I thought it would be easy for me to find a house in the district. Couldn't find a house in the city, that's how I got in Mount Pleasant [South Carolina] because all my life I've been in the city, except no when we first got married I was in North Charleston [South Carolina]. So, I had to look at the laws as to when you had to be in the district legally and so forth, and we rented after my first announcement and I made sure that, and it was very interesting because some of the first questions people would ask, "What a minister's wife doing running for a political office?" And I said, "What a minister doing," 'cause we had many ministers--South Carolina is one of those states that you don't really get paid to be a legislator, you know you get a stipend. And that of course know, you know holds back a lot of people from running for political office because you gotta work, but pastors were more flexible, so you would find everyday to have a lot of pastors and I said, "Well if the pastor can run for political office I sho' don't see why his wife can't." My husband [Benjamin Whipper, Sr.] had no problems with it at all, and so we moved into the district. We finally found a house and moved into the district; I've downsized since then. I was very interesting, very interesting. I had to fight one of the person who also offered was a male who was a long-time activist, at least he was among those that had desegregated the golf club. He was supported by most of the Democratic leaders like Hollings [Ernest Hollings], you know and so folks said, "You sure are crazy that you're gonna run against," what they call him Big John. He was the, the key person in all of the elections and so forth and so on. And so I told them I thought I could be, beat him because at the level that I had worked, you know with that Operation Catch-Up, I've been all in the county, I knew parents all over the county and Big John was just in political environment more so, and so that was my first battle and I won that in the primary.

The Honorable Lottie Watkins

Lottie Heywood Watkins is the retired CEO of Lottie Watkins Enterprises, Inc., a full-service real estate company specializing in property management. Watkins entered the real estate industry in the early 1960s and became the first African American female real estate broker in the Atlanta market. Watkins is known throughout the Atlanta business community as a shrewd businesswoman and is highly respected for the contributions she has made to civic and social affairs.

Watkins is the daughter of Susie Wilson and Eddie Heywood, a 1920s jazz pianist. Her brother, the second eldest of five children, gained critical fame with the Eddie Heywood, Jr. Trio throughout the 1940s as a songwriter, composer and pianist. Watkins was educated in the Atlanta Public School system and graduated from Booker T. Washington High School’s accelerated class in 1935. She graduated from Reid’s School of Business and became a secretary for Alexander—Calloway Realty Company. She worked as a teller/clerk at the Mutual Federal Savings and Loan Association until she started Lottie Watkins Enterprises, Inc.

Watkins became active with the voter’s rights campaign, the Civil Rights Movement and community–based organizations. In 1977, she was elected to the Georgia House of Representatives. She served as Co-Chair of the YMCA Membership Campaign, the American Cancer Society, and the NAACP Membership Drive and Freedom Fund Banquet. She was Chair of the Christmas Cheer Fund for the Atlanta Inquirer. Watkins has received numerous awards and citations; the Pioneer in Real Estate Award (Providence Missionary Baptist Church), Appeal of Human Rights Award (30th Anniversary Celebration of the Civil Rights Movement), Pioneer Award for Community Leadership (Empire Real Estate Board) and Outstanding Achievement in Real Estate and Business Award (Empire Real Estate Board 50th Anniversary). She was listed in Who’s Who of American Women, in Finance and Industry, Black World and International Who’s Who in Community Service and World Who’s Who of Women.

Watkins resided in her native Atlanta with her daughters and their families, Joyce and Judy, who actively operated Lottie Watkins Enterprises, Inc.

Watkins passed away on February 20, 2017.

Accession Number

A2006.037

Sex

Female

Interview Date

3/16/2006 |and| 4/12/2006

Last Name

Watkins

Maker Category
Schools

Edmund Asa Ware Elementary School

Booker T. Washington High School

Reid's Business School

First Name

Lottie

Birth City, State, Country

Atlanta

HM ID

WAT08

Favorite Season

Spring

State

Georgia

Favorite Vacation Destination

Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts

Favorite Quote

None

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Georgia

Birth Date

6/4/1919

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Atlanta

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Chicken, Fish

Death Date

2/20/2017

Short Description

Community activist and state representative The Honorable Lottie Watkins (1919 - 2017 ) was the first African American female real estate broker in the Atlanta market, and is the founder of Lottie Watkins Enterprises, Inc.

Employment

Mutual Federal Savings & Loan Association of Atlanta

Alexander-Caloway Real Estate Company

Lottie Watkins Enterprises, Inc.

Georgia House of Representatives

Favorite Color

Pastel

Timing Pairs
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DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of The Honorable Lottie Watkins' interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins lists her favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins describes her mother

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins describes her father

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins talks about her brother, Eddie Heywood, Jr.

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins lists her siblings

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins describes her childhood community in Atlanta, Georgia

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins remembers living near Zilla Mays

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins describes the sights, sounds and smells of growing up, pt. 1

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins describes Atlanta's Providence Baptist Church

Tape: 1 Story: 11 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins describes the sights, sounds and smells of growing up, pt. 2

Tape: 1 Story: 12 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins remembers Edmund Asa Ware Elementary School

Tape: 1 Story: 13 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins remembers visiting Atlanta area churches

Tape: 1 Story: 14 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins remembers Booker T. Washington High School

Tape: 1 Story: 15 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins recalls working at her aunt's restaurant in Atlanta

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins talks about her father's jazz career

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins recalls attending business school in Atlanta

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins recalls working in Atlanta University's registrar's office

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins recalls working for the Alexander-Calloway Realty Company

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins recalls her start at Mutual Federal Savings and Loan Association of Atlanta

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins recalls building her home in Atlanta

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins talks about her marriages

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins recalls her training with Remington Rand, Inc.

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins recalls how John Wesley Dobbs financed her daughter's education

Tape: 2 Story: 10 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins recalls her daughter's graduation from Clark College

Tape: 2 Story: 11 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins remembers her daughter's wedding

Tape: 2 Story: 12 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins describes Clarence A. Bacote

Tape: 2 Story: 13 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins describes Atlanta's neighborhood clubs

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins describes Atlanta's African American voting districts

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins recalls her voter registration work in 1962

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins describes her decision to start her own business

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins recalls managing property on Atlanta's Anderson Avenue

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins recalls residence managers whom she employed

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins remembers a tenant who stood up for her

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins recalls joining Rich's Business Women's Advisory Board

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins recalls the student protest of Rich's Department Store in Atlanta

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins describes forgetting an important protest at an Atlanta hotel

Tape: 3 Story: 10 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins describes the current management of Lottie Watkins Enterprises, Inc.

Tape: 3 Story: 11 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins recalls her run for the Georgia House of Representatives

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins recalls her Democratic Party involvement

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins recalls campaigning for James Earl "Jimmy" Carter

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins remembers campaigning for Ivan Allen, Jr.

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins remembers Mayor Ivan Allen, Jr.

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins recalls serving on the Democratic finance committee

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins recalls moving to a new office in Atlanta

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins recalls her office relocation from Hunter Street to Gordon Street

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins describes the loan for her building on Atlanta's Gordon Street

Tape: 4 Story: 9 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins reflects upon her political campaigns

Tape: 4 Story: 10 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins reflects upon her SCLC involvement

Tape: 4 Story: 11 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins explains why she shared her story

Tape: 4 Story: 12 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins describes her NAACP involvement

Tape: 4 Story: 13 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins reflects upon her legacy

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins narrates her photographs, pt. 1

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - The Honorable Lottie Watkins narrates her photographs, pt. 2

DASession

1$1

DATape

3$4

DAStory

4$1

DATitle
The Honorable Lottie Watkins recalls managing property on Atlanta's Anderson Avenue
The Honorable Lottie Watkins recalls her Democratic Party involvement
Transcript
I decided that I wanted to go into business. Now there was not another black woman in business, real estate. So--$$All the other companies were men?$$Yeah, but I decided that it was time for a lady to do something, and with me being a lady I can make a difference, you know, appearance-wise, pleading and everything. So I had an office [for Lottie Watkins Enterprises, Inc., Atlanta, Georgia]--well you cut off my dining room just about this size.$$This was when you first started out?$$Yes.$$When you first opened up?$$Y- 774 Hunter Street [Atlanta, Georgia].$$And that was in 1960?$$It--near the en- in November near the end of the year in '60 [1960].$$November of 1960, and you were like forty-something years old?$$Yeah.$$Forty-one or so?$$So I stepped in the water and everybody was so happy, people were calling me. So with me--I, I--the business was growing and during those days the whites managed all the big complexes, blacks didn't have any. So a man named Bob Chennault [Robert L. Chennault] came by and said, "I want you to go with me when you have time." I said, "Where Mr. Chennault?" He said, "I have two friends, Victor Massey [ph.], and his friend is building ninety-six units on Anderson Avenue, and I would like for them to meet you." He said, "Two other real estate companies is trying to get, get them, but I just want them to meet you." I said, "Mr. Chennault, now you know I can't go any place during the week, now I gotta stay here and take care of this business." He said, "Let me call 'em and see will they come down on a Saturday to meet you." So Mr. Chennault took me to the Healey Building [Atlanta, Georgia] on a Saturday, and I met these gentlemen, and they told me they would let me know. The next week, they wrote me a letter and asked me to come back to talk to them and I went up there and they told me they were impressed by me and they would like to give me the opportunity of filling up these units for them. I couldn't believe it, so I got them, but I kept the lawn manicured and--$$This was a property management contract?$$Yes.$$Okay.$$And I kept the shrubs trimmed, and you didn't see nothing out there but clean, clean as a pin. Oh, I had--Jasper Williams [Jasper W. Williams, Jr.] was a tenant. He's one of the biggest preachers in this town now. I had Moses Norman [Moses C. Norman, Sr.], he was superintendent of the schools, and I--there was a guy was named L.C. Crow [ph.] and Daphne [ph.]. Now Crow has a big restaurant in East Point [Georgia].$$Okay.$$He was a teacher but he--but all these guys came from Anderson Avenue, and if they got out of hand, or the music was too loud, I would say "Hey, your music was too loud," blah, blah, blah, blah. "Well we didn't know it, Ms. Watkins [HistoryMaker Lottie Watkins], we apologize," but they stayed there until they bought a house.$Let's talk a little bit about your involvement with the Democratic National Committee, the membership committee for that, and then some of your political involvements, and what you've done to help people get elected to office, and some of the presidents and the mayors of Georgia that you've actually had affiliations with.$$Well--$$I see in 1966 [sic.] you were on President Jimmy Carter's [President James Earl "Jimmy" Carter, Jr.] campaign.$$Well, I--when he announced to be the president I was on the invitation. It had two blacks on it; it had me and Andy Young [HistoryMaker Andrew Young]. My name was up at the top so I got involved with his campaign and there was some good blacks, like George Booker worked for the national Democratic Party, and he had been here to help us with [President] Lyndon Baines Johnson when we got the vote out for him. So he would always come to Atlanta [Georgia]. He knew us and Jimmy Carter, I met him when he was the governor, and there was always some women like me. We always joined a party just to have that card, and then there was the Democratic Women's Party [Democratic Women's Party of Georgia; Georgia Federation of Democratic Women], so we joined that and we would go, you know, all over the State of Georgia with them and they were just--turned out to be lovely people. I was shocked to know that they were nice and even Sam Nunn's wife [Colleen O'Brien Nunn] was nice.$$Sam who? Nunn (simultaneous)?$$(Simultaneous) Nunn, he was our senator then.$$Okay.$$She was nice, and whenever there was a big function here I was always on the dais because I held an office in the state Democratic Party.$$Okay.