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Derek Dingle

Publishing executive Derek T. Dingle was born on November 2, 1961 in New York City. He graduated from Norfolk State University with a B.A. in journalism and also completed the Magazine Management Program at New York University.

Dingle joined Black Enterprise magazine in 1983 as an assistant editor and was promoted six months later to associate editor. After he completed the New York University magazine management program in 1985, he was made a senior editor. In 1987, Dingle was promoted once again to managing editor, a position he held until 1990. He then joined the staff of Money magazine, where he wrote articles about mutual fund investment and served as senior writer and a member of the planning team for Money Special on Small Business. In 1991, Dingle co-founded Milestone Media Inc., the nation's largest black-owned comic book company, with childhood friends Denys Cowan, Dwayne McDuffue, Michael Davis and Christopher Priest. After resigning from Money magazine in 1992, he was named Milestone’s president and CEO. One Milestone character, Static Shock, was developed into an animated series that ran from 2000 to 2005 on the WB Network and the Cartoon Network. In December of 1999, Dingle returned to Black Enterprise magazine as editor-at-large. Within a year, he was promoted to vice president and executive editor, serving until July of 2008. That year, Dingle was appointed as the senior vice president and editor-in-chief of Black Enterprise magazine, where he was responsible for the strategic planning and editorial direction of the magazine. In 2014, Dingle was named a Chief Content Officer of Black Enterprise. In this capacity, he oversaw content development and strategy for the "Black Enterprise Entrepreneurs Conference Expo," as well as other custom events, including the Black Enterprise/Walmart 20/20 Vision Forum on Supplier Diversity, the Black Enterprise/Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Education Symposium Series, the American black Film Festival, and the Baltimore African American Film Festival. In addition, Dingle had executive oversight of both Black Enterprise television shows: "Black Enterprise Business Report" and "Our World with Black Enterprise."

Dingle authored countless Black Enterprise magazine cover stories and editorials and appeared as a business expert on numerous television networks and radio programs, including CNN, CNBC, NBC's "Weekend Today," and National Public Radio. An award-winning editor, Dingle is the author of three books: Black Enterprise Titans of the B.E. 100s: Black CEOs Who Redefined and Conquered American Business (1999), Black Enterprise Lessons from the Top: Success Strategies from America’s Leading Black CEOs (2007), and First in the Field: Jackie Robinson, Baseball Hero (1998), which received a 1999 International Reading Association Award. Dingle serves as a general member of the National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) and the American Society of Magazine Editors (ASME). He also serves as a member of the board of directors for Norfolk State University's School of Communications, and on the advisory board for the New York Urban League’s Manhattan Chapter.

Dingle lives in Guttenberg, New Jersey.

Derek T. Dingle was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on March 20, 2014 and on December 14, 2016.

Accession Number

A2014.091

Sex

Male

Interview Date

3/20/2014 |and| 12/14/2016

Last Name

Dingle

Maker Category
Marital Status

Single

Middle Name

Terrence

Schools

Norfolk State University

New York University

Search Occupation Category
First Name

Derek

Birth City, State, Country

Brooklyn

HM ID

DIN04

Favorite Season

Fall

State

New York

Favorite Vacation Destination

mediterranean

Favorite Quote

Unbelievable.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

New York

Birth Date

11/2/1961

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

New York

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Hamburger

Short Description

Magazine publishing chief executive and publishing executive Derek Dingle (1961 - ) co-founded and then served as president and CEO of Milestone Media Inc., the nation’s largest African American-owned comic book company, in 1992. In 2008, Dingle was appointed as the senior vice president and editor-in-chief of Black Enterprise magazine.

Employment

Black Enterprise

Money Magazine

Milestone Media

Favorite Color

Blue

Elinor Tatum

Newspaper publisher Elinor Ruth Tatum was born on January 29, 1971 in New York City, New York to Wilbert and Susan Tatum. Her father was a former publisher and chief executive officer of the New York Amsterdam News. Tatum was raised in New York City and was educated in the City’s primary and secondary schools. She graduated from St. Lawrence University with her B.A. degree in government studies in 1993. Tatum went on to attend Stockholm University in Stockholm, Sweden, where she studied international relations until 1994.

Upon returning from Sweden, Tatum joined her father at the New York Amsterdam News, where she accepted a position as assistant to the publisher. In 1996, she was promoted to associate publisher and chief operating officer. Tatum received her M.A. degree in journalism from New York University in 1997, and was promoted to publisher and editor-in-chief of the New York Amsterdam News, becoming one of the youngest publishers in the history of African American press. In 2006, Tatum began producing and co-hosting a weekly segment of Al Sharpton’s weekly radio show “Keep’in It Real.” She has also appeared on WNBC evening news, ARISE, The O'Reilly Factor, 20/20, New York 1, CUNY TV, the Today Show, and NBC Nightly News. After her father passed away in 2009, Tatum assumed full control of the New York Amsterdam News.

Tatum has held many civic positions and served on numerous community boards, including St. Lawrence University, the New York Urban League, the Neighborhood Defender Service of Harlem, the Chinatown YMCA, Manhattan Community Board 3, and the Creative Visions Foundation. She was also the former secretary of the National Newspaper Publishers Association.

Tatum has received many awards including recognition in Who’s Who of American Women; a Doctor Of Humane Letters Honorus Causae from Metropolitan College (New York City); Manhattan Borough Presidents’ Women’s History Month Award; the Public Advocate of New York City Award of Distinction; the Women Who Make A Difference Award; Outstanding Business Empowerment from the New York Chapter of Black Business and Professional Women Award; Standing On their Shoulders Award from the National Action Network, the Good Scout Award, and the Pi Beta Phi’s Members of Distinction Award.

Elinor Tatum was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on November 11, 2013.

Accession Number

A2013.282

Sex

Female

Interview Date

11/11/2013

Last Name

Tatum

Maker Category
Middle Name

Ruth

Schools

St. Lawrence University

Stockholm University

New York University

Search Occupation Category
First Name

Elinor

Birth City, State, Country

New York

HM ID

TAT02

Favorite Season

Seasonal Changes

State

New York

Favorite Vacation Destination

None

Favorite Quote

I Promise to Try.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

New York

Birth Date

1/29/1971

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

New York

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Vegetables

Short Description

Newspaper publishing chief executive Elinor Tatum (1971 - ) was named publisher and editor-in-chief of the New York Amsterdam News at age twenty six, making her one of the youngest publishers in the history of African American press.

Employment

New York Amsterdam News

Delete

Favorite Color

Red

Timing Pairs
0,0:2600,192:10580,307:13520,354:13940,361:14430,369:21727,458:22579,478:26058,595:33016,778:34081,803:34507,810:35856,838:36282,845:42070,873:46725,983:48530,1022:48910,1027:69472,1276:72160,1323:72416,1328:77096,1426:77717,1436:77993,1441:78269,1446:82047,1524:85038,1555:85794,1571:97123,1719:99750,1770:100034,1778:100602,1787:101028,1795:101667,1805:117950,2058:118590,2067:118910,2072:123230,2176:137409,2355:137693,2360:138190,2369:138829,2381:139113,2491:151540,2624:152644,2639:153012,2644:154576,2672:157336,2711:168820,2830:169148,2835:174042,2899:174354,2904:178002,2927:178920,2947:185962,3033:186466,3041:186826,3047:195540,3141$0,0:5474,86:6204,97:6861,110:12044,238:14818,288:15402,297:20488,378:21160,391:21832,400:22168,409:32164,562:32476,568:48318,861:48738,867:50082,889:50418,894:59923,1006:79444,1192:125884,1674:137394,1930:144024,1987:154990,2102:155550,2110:156110,2119:156510,2127:158030,2167:158510,2174:159150,2191:178988,2626:182950,2719
DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Elinor Tatum's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Elinor Tatum lists her favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Elinor Tatum describes her mother's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Elinor Tatum talks about her father's start in New York politics

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Elinor Tatum describes her father's childhood

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Elinor Tatum talks about her father's experiences in Japan and Sweden

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Elinor Tatum describes her parents' personalities and who she takes after

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Elinor Tatum talks about her earliest childhood memory

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Elinor Tatum describes the block where she grew up

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Elinor Tatum describes the sights, sounds, and smells of her childhood

Tape: 1 Story: 11 - Elinor Tatum talks about her parents' work and community activism

Tape: 1 Story: 12 - Elinor Tatum remembers learning from her father that her voice mattered

Tape: 1 Story: 13 - Elinor Tatum talks about her father's activism and political career

Tape: 1 Story: 14 - Elinor Tatum recalls the eclectic mix of people she met as a child

Tape: 1 Story: 15 - Elinor Tatum reflects on her childhood personality

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Elinor Tatum reflects on the importance of holidays in her childhood

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Elinor Tatum describes the privileged culture of the Dwight School

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Elinor Tatum recalls two teachers' reactions to her dyslexia at the Dwight School

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Elinor Tatum describes overcoming her dyslexia

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Elinor Tatum describes her interests in high school

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Elinor Tatum talks about the start of her father's career with the 'Amsterdam News'

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Elinor Tatum describes her father's changing positions on Louis Farrakhan's anti-Semitic comments

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Elinor Tatum talks about navigating her black and Jewish identities

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Elinor Tatum remembers a letter she sent to her father

Tape: 2 Story: 10 - Elinor Tatum talks about how she decided to go to St. Lawrence University

Tape: 2 Story: 11 - Elinor Tatum reminisces about her summers while growing up

Tape: 2 Story: 12 - Elinor Tatum recalls being invited on a life-changing trip to Africa

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Elinor Tatum talks about diversity at St. Lawrence University

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Elinor Tatum talks about leaving for Africa

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Elinor Tatum recounts the achievements of the friends she traveled with

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Elinor Tatum talks about her trip to Africa

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Elinor Tatum talks about experiences at Lincoln University and the New School

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Elinor Tatum talks about her life in Sweden

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Elinor Tatum talks about starting her career at the 'Amsterdam News' in 1994

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Elinor Tatum talks about practicing journalism in college

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Elinor Tatum talks about the culture at the 'Amsterdam News'

Tape: 3 Story: 10 - Elinor Tatum talks about the National Newspaper Publishers Association

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Elinor Tatum talks about her father becoming sole owner of the 'Amsterdam News'

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Elinor Tatum remembers how she learned about her promotion to Editor-in-Chief of the 'Amsterdam News'

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Elinor Tatum talks about studying journalism at New York University

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Elinor Tatum talks about adopting her father's legacy at the 'Amsterdam News'

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Elinor Tatum talks about the success of the 'Amsterdam News'

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Elinor Tatum talks about her transition into Editor-in-Chief at the 'Amsterdam News'

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Elinor Tatum reflects upon her accomplishments as Editor-in-Chief of the 'Amsterdam News'

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Elinor Tatum talks about gentrification in Harlem during her lifetime

Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Elinor Tatum talks about the importance of the black press for the future

Tape: 4 Story: 10 - Elinor Tatum talks about her political involvement

Tape: 4 Story: 11 - Elinor Tatum talks about necessary technological changes in the black press

Tape: 4 Story: 12 - Elinor Tatum talks about her mother and motherhood

Tape: 4 Story: 13 - Elinor Tatum describes her hopes and concerns for the black community

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Elinor Tatum talks about the changes she wants for the black community

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Elinor Tatum talks about the significance of her father's generation

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Elinor Tatum reflects upon her legacy

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Elinor Tatum reflects upon how she has changed since her childhood

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Elinor Tatum talks about the legacy of the Obama presidency

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Elinor Tatum narrates her photographs

DASession

1$1

DATape

2$4

DAStory

3$2

DATitle
Elinor Tatum recalls two teachers' reactions to her dyslexia at the Dwight School
Elinor Tatum remembers how she learned about her promotion to Editor-in-Chief of the 'Amsterdam News'
Transcript
So what--tell me--I know it was privileged, but how do you think it affected you going there [the Dwight School in New York City, New York]? And, and ha--they were better at services there?$$They were better at services 'cause I had the money and they understood learning disabilities.$$Because I've heard that people say sometimes they have to rely on public schools because their--$$Well, see at that point in time--now the public schools have a lot more resources, and they have IEPs [Individualized Education Programs] and they understand learning disabilities in a way that they did not. Because in the 1970s the word dyslexia was like a dirty word.$$That's right.$$And--$$It was something to be ashamed of. That's--$$Exactly, exactly, and so there was no help. People just ignored it. In the public schools they put you in the slower track, I mean, to the point where I had a teacher in the 6th grade at Hunter [Hunter College Elementary] who basically told me that I was never gonna amount to anything.$$I had read that. I had read tha--$$And, I mean, she was this absolutely horrible, old woman who I couldn't stand. Her name was Mrs. Kerry. She was downright evil, downright evil. And so one of my favorite stories about her is I ran into her in the--in the summer of 1989, when I had just graduated from high school. And she saw me, and I said "hello, Mrs. Kerry." She's like, "hi, how are you? Have you graduated from high school?" And I said, "well, yes." She's like, "well, are you going to trade school?" And I said "oh, no. Actually, I'm a scholar at St. Lawrence University; thank you very much." And I walked away from her. Four years--no, five years later I ran into her again. I'd completed four years at St. Lawrence University, a year of graduate work at Stockholm University, and I was then editor at the 'Amsterdam News,' and--I may not have actually been an editor yet, but she didn't need to know that. So I run into Mrs. Kerry again. She lived not too far from here. She said, "so what are you up to? Did you graduate from college? Do you have a job?" I said "well, yes; I'm an editor at the 'Amsterdam News,' thank you, and what are you doing?" She said "I've retired," and I looked at her and I said "thank God," and I walked away and I never saw her again.$$See those people--you never--I mean, it's that story of people, you know.$$But I've got--but I've got a good story from that same place. There was a woman named Mrs. Kagan, and that name might be familiar to you, that last name Kagan.$$Yeah, oh, I know.$$Well, there was a woman named Gloria Kagan, who was my teacher at the same time that Mrs. Kerry was my teacher, and she worked really, really hard with me and made sure that I was successful. She was this great woman. In 1994 or 1995, a piece ran in the "New York Times" about me. It was on the public lives page. And I got a note from her, and the note just said, "It's so great to see my kids grow up so well." And Gloria Kagan happened to be the mother of Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan.$$That's lovely. But she, she's brilliant herself. That's lovely.$$Yeah.$So in 1996, this--you know, the--everything is sort of set in motion now. Is there a discussion with you and your father [Wilbert Tatum]? I mean, you know, he ha--remember his words were, you know, it's now or--$$Well, you know, there, there really wasn't a discussion. I was going to graduate school at that point [New York University in New York City, New York], and I was learning the business from the ground up. I was I think Chief Operating Officer at that point at the paper, and I was--I was learning everything, and I was learning it at my father's side, which was one of the greatest gifts I could possibly have gotten. And then I graduated from NYU. And the National Association of Black Journalists--actually no, it was the local--it was the NYABJ [New York Association of Black Journalists] was having their annual dinner. And we had two or three tables at this dinner this year, and I had no idea why. We had never participated in NYABJ before. I knew very little about it. And I'm sitting at the, the table at the dinner. And Terrie Williams, the PR guru, says, "Ellie, have you read the, the 'Amsterdam News' ad in the journal?" And I said no. She's like, "Well, look at it." So I open up the journal ad, and I said, oh, it's looks nice and close it up again. She's like, "No, read it." I open it up again and I read it, and I read the whole thing. And it's signed by me as publisher and editor-in-chief of the 'Amsterdam News.' That was the way my father announced to me that I was now heading the organization. So that's--that was my father's way of telling me, "okay, kid, your turn now."$$Was he there that evening?$$Yep, he was there that evening, and he gave a speech, and it was really--it was an amazing evening. It really was an amazing evening. I was completely dumbstruck. I had absolutely no idea it was gonna happen.$$So wait, he had written the, the--he had written the--he had written and it's signed by you. Did somehow Terrie knew that you didn't know?$$Yeah. Yeah, she was one of our guests at the table.$$Wow. So what did that mean then, him handing over the reins? What did that mean at that point 'cause you're just finish--you just finished. And, and--$$Right, but I'd all--already been at the paper for, you know--well, actually no, I had not been--$$No, you, you--$$--had not--had not--$$--hadn't been there--$$--for very long.$$You'd been there--you'd been there for two years.$$No, no, no, I'd been there for--it was 1998. I'd been there for four years already.$$Oh, 1998, okay.$$Yeah, yeah.$$Okay, so, so you had already finished NYU--$$Yeah, yeah.$$--at that point, okay.$$It was after--it was right after I finished NYU--$$Okay.$$--that was done.

Dennis Terry

Nonprofit executive Dennis Leon Terry was born on October 26, 1944 in Smithfield, North Carolina to Daisy Smith Williams and Kelly Terry, Jr. He grew up in the segregated South and experienced racial segregation and the overwhelming presence of the Ku Klux Klan. He attended North Carolina’s Lucille Hunter Elementary School and Springfield, Massachusetts' Buckingham Junior High School and Springfield Technical High School.

In 1964, Terry attended Howard University, where he majored in economics, was a member of the Howard University track team and was involved in Howard’s work study program. In addition to being active on campus, Terry also volunteered within the community. In 1968, Terry graduated from Howard University with his B.A. degree in economics.

After graduation Terry became the operations manager for the Long Island Lighting Company. In 1971, motivated by the concept of “diverse cultural groups coming together to produce the common good,” Terry and others founded the Mid Bronx Senior Citizens Council (MBSCC). The MBSCC was established as an advocacy group for the elderly focusing on the deteriorating areas of New York City’s South Bronx community.

In 1972, Terry became the chairman of the New York Urban League’s Bronx Borough Board and attended the National Black Political Convention held in Gary, Indiana. From 1976 until 1996, Terry was a board member of the South Bronx Overall Economic Development Corporation (SoBRO), a company that sought to reverse the flight of jobs and business from the South Bronx. Terry was also a board member of the Bronx Lebanon Hospital from 1981 to 1982.

Terry is retired and currently resides in the Bronx, New York.

Dennis Leon Terry was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on October 25, 2007.

Accession Number

A2007.303

Sex

Male

Interview Date

10/25/2007

Last Name

Terry

Maker Category
Schools

Buckingham Junior High School

Hunter GT/AIG Magnet Elementary School

Elias Brookings School

Central Junior High School

Springfield Technical High School

First Name

Dennis

Birth City, State, Country

Smithfield

HM ID

TER05

Favorite Season

Spring

State

North Carolina

Favorite Vacation Destination

Caribbean

Favorite Quote

None

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

New York

Birth Date

10/26/1944

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

New York

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Pork Chops

Short Description

Nonprofit executive and civic leader Dennis Terry (1944 - ) co-founded the Mid Bronx Senior Citizens Council, and was a board member of the South Bronx Overall Economic Development Corporations, an organization that sought to reverse the flight of jobs and business from the South Bronx.

Employment

Long Island Lighting Company

Mid Bronx Senior Citizen Council, Inc.

Potomac Electric Power Company

Favorite Color

Blue

Timing Pairs
0,0:7092,114:24230,286:28257,312:30249,344:32241,379:34150,406:39130,478:47690,524:49840,555:53019,588:53698,596:57578,635:58257,643:66290,733:79031,907:79517,920:88024,971:94049,1005:101329,1136:106408,1182:108172,1202:110413,1212:121189,1261:121770,1266:122932,1282:125955,1297:131772,1346:132152,1352:143096,1555:143780,1565:144084,1574:145756,1599:146212,1607:146820,1646:157900,1758:158212,1804:166230,1866:175459,1991:176289,2003:178613,2033:181518,2083:184686,2091:185026,2097:192160,2201:195087,2233:202058,2311:205010,2368:205298,2373:205658,2379:207098,2403:207386,2408:207746,2414:208970,2436:209402,2441:210050,2453:211346,2474:211634,2479:230196,2680:230980,2689:246920,2833:260064,2910:263300,2933:264665,2949:287810,3179:288242,3184:296070,3228:297638,3243:301213,3288:309320,3396:309725,3404:316286,3517:320398,3524:321940,3536:322516,3547:323308,3560:323596,3565:324244,3575:327484,3658:342899,3881:347420,3939:355010,4060$0,0:7789,73:8311,80:10225,97:10573,102:13096,134:17272,182:17968,191:18577,199:21013,246:25978,274:26452,282:27005,290:27400,299:27795,305:31350,369:33483,422:38960,465:39300,470:39980,479:40490,486:42445,522:43210,532:47800,595:63517,694:74438,772:74894,777:75578,784:90276,946:90771,952:96672,975:102016,1023:106105,1063:106460,1069:110444,1092:117206,1152:123310,1230:129214,1343:133906,1388:134452,1395:144930,1478:147166,1519:154651,1618:168850,1734:176560,1858:177169,1867:180301,1906:182128,1930:187580,1964:188440,1975:188956,1985:191278,2024:192052,2034:195046,2049:195682,2056:200393,2102:200749,2107:204309,2221:205021,2230:208848,2300:231640,2459:232760,2482:235250,2499
DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Dennis Terry's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Dennis Terry lists his favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Dennis Terry describes his mother's family background, pt. 1

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Dennis Terry describes his mother's family background, pt. 2

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Dennis Terry describes his mother's personality

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Dennis Terry describes his father's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Dennis Terry talks about his paternal grandmother

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Dennis Terry describes his father's personality

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Dennis Terry recalls the entertainment and political centers in Raleigh, North Carolina

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Dennis Terry describes the community of Washington Terrace in Raleigh, North Carolina

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Dennis Terry remembers his childhood in Raleigh, North Carolina

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Dennis Terry describes the residents of Washington Terrace in Raleigh, North Carolina

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Dennis Terry remembers Lucille Hunter Elementary School in Raleigh, North Carolina

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Dennis Terry talks about his educational experiences in the South and the North

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Dennis Terry describes his awareness of racial discrimination in North Carolina

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Dennis Terry recalls a teacher at Elias Brookings Elementary School in Springfield, Massachusetts

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Dennis Terry describes the demographics of the Old Hill neighborhood in Springfield, Massachusetts

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Dennis Terry remembers Classical Junior High School in Springfield, Massachusetts

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Dennis Terry describes his secondary education in Springfield, Massachusetts

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Dennis Terry describes his experiences at Technical High School in Springfield, Massachusetts

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Dennis Terry talks about his experiences at summer camp

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Dennis Terry remembers his doo-wop group

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Dennis Terry describes his decision to attend Howard University in Washington, D.C.

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Dennis Terry recalls his first year at Howard University

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Dennis Terry remembers Ewart Brown and Jerry Guess

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Dennis Terry remembers the riots of 1968 in Washington, D.C.

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Dennis Terry describes his position at the Potomac Electric Power Company

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Dennis Terry recalls his first role at the Long Island Lighting Company

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Dennis Terry describes how he came to work for the Long Island Lighting Company

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Dennis Terry describes his experiences at the Long Island Lighting Company, pt. 1

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Dennis Terry describes his experiences at the Long Island Lighting Company, pt. 2

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Dennis Terry talks about his career at the Long Island Lighting Company

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Dennis Terry describes his community involvement in the Bronx, New York

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Dennis Terry describes his volunteer work in the Bronx and Brooklyn boroughs of New York City

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Dennis Terry talks about the demographics of the Bronx, New York

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Dennis Terry recalls the New York City teacher's strike of 1968

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Dennis Terry remembers the formation of the Mid Bronx Senior Citizens Council, Inc.

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Dennis Terry describes the Mid Bronx Senior Citizens Council, Inc.

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Dennis Terry talks about the housing facilities created by the Mid Bronx Senior Citizens Council, Inc.

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Dennis Terry talks about Andrew Freedman and the Andrew Freeman Home in Bronx, New York

Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Dennis Terry talks about his family

Tape: 5 Story: 9 - Dennis Terry describes the South Bronx Overall Economic Development Corporation

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Dennis Terry recalls the National Black Political Convention of 1976

Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Dennis Terry reflects upon his honors and awards

Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Dennis Terry talks about his plans for the future

Tape: 6 Story: 4 - Dennis Terry narrates his photographs

DASession

1$1

DATape

4$5

DAStory

5$1

DATitle
Dennis Terry describes his experiences at the Long Island Lighting Company, pt. 2
Dennis Terry describes his volunteer work in the Bronx and Brooklyn boroughs of New York City
Transcript
So I gained perspectives of--about the company [Long Island Lighting Company] and about the officers that ran the company that however, didn't ev- that never translated into a big job for me (laughter), because I guess I also had a lot of questions and even some answers to some of the questions. But I met good people, learned a lot about the industry, and got an awful lot--an opportunity to do a lot of interesting and good things. I eventually was offered a job back in the sales department, which I took and it started that I was an analyst and that eventually as the analyst of the jobs of assisting either doing budgetary work, working with preparing indices for the salesmen to use when they went on their routes selling our products of gas and electric. They would have to make estimates of customer usage for heating, for their appliances and things of that sort. So I got a chance to do a lot of work in that area pulling together these estimates of appliance usage and comparability, I guess, between oil, heat--electric heat and gas heat for comparison for selling purposes. If you're going to sell you want to demonstrate that your product is either more efficient or cheaper, which ever works. So they had a lot of challenge in doing that. I was also responsible for doing a lot of work on demographic analysis in putting together sales territories for our salesmen so that meant we had to use the census information to age, to get some idea of the age of the home and make determinations about the age of the heating equipment and then to determine what was potential within a given area so that we did give them a territory that would have to convince them that look you can make a living here. They never enjoyed any of that stuff, we call that the egghead work (laughter). Those guys, they in many occasions I think their gut instincts were right about what management was attempting to do to them. But I was the young management trainee that had to go find the empirical evidence to support and implement some of these initiatives and beliefs that our management felt in those areas. I was young so I--it was something that I was learning and I loved it. I eventually got to be in charge of the budgeting for the sales department and the preparation of their budgets and also to oversee the technical supports to our salesforce and we had three or four sales offices at one time, so they would come in and bring the work back to our sales assistants and they would prepare the comparative heating analysis and these guys would then take back to the customer and things of this sort. So we got to do that. I got to also computerize a lot of that stuff, and use portable computers at a time when they were just starting. But I never go to be a department manager or division manager for a host of reasons but I was able to learn a lot about my industry and to--I had a lot of leeway, I had a budget, I prepared the budgets for the department and I had a lot of, since I processed all of the budgets, my signatory authority was probably comparable to that of departments and some assistant VPs. So it was, I guess it was a taxonomy or contradiction that I would have such financial prerogatives and not have an organizational status.$$Will you tell us any of the reasons that you think you did not become a department manager?$$Oh, sure.$$Or were not named as such at any rate?$$Well, I think you don't have in any corporate environment like that, in any corporate environment I believe, I think you need a mentor, you need to be connected to some political system. Ability alone will not do it. I remember one department manager telling me that if he needed brains he could always buy those and I said to him, "That's why I didn't work for you" (laughter). But that's how they sort of treated intellectual ability, so if you were thinking you were going to think your way in a job they didn't necessarily think that way. Also it was--they told me that I didn't live on the island [Long Island, New York], but I didn't think that was the case.$So you got involved in the evenings--$$Yes, and that led me to paint the church basements and to help establish free childcare and to also create a community free health clinic that included working with the Panthers [Black Panther Party]--local chapter of the Panthers, as well as doctors from the local hospital who volunteered their time and we've operated out of a church basement until the insurance committee of the church reminded the pastor that (laughter) such activity wasn't covered. But nevertheless it was an enriching experience and it gave me a renewed commitment to that kind of work. I eventually got invited to the board of the New York Urban League's branch auxiliary in the Bronx [New York] through my inquiry efforts and I served that institution for over twenty years in many capacities on a volunteer basis. So I was able to be inside, I guess a civil rights institution from the inside while, of course, working--well I'm still working by the way and raising a family and I'm getting involved in my local community in the civic life of my local community. Politics of course was something I had thought about, but I--the more I worked in my civic activities the more it became evident that I didn't have a connected base that would do me--that would serve me well in elected politics. I made one run--one attempt to do that and--$$What did you run for?$$I ran for school board and that didn't pan out so is was--so I just decided I'd just continue to do this work.$$And did you choose your work based upon what you saw in the South Bronx [Bronx, New York] in terms of need? Did you choose your projects?$$Well, I think I did. I thought maybe that I could bring some of the skillsets that I was acquiring in my work in some of the analysis, analytical work associated with doing graphic analysis and things like this and apply that to making a case for more services. I thought that would be an interesting approach to what were some of the conditions there. Of course in the '70s [1970s] you had the community control issue, school decentralization was, powerful issues here in this city, (unclear) with the Ocean Hill-Brownsville experiment [Ocean Hill-Brownsville Experimental School District], powerful things. Al Shanker [Albert Shanker] drove many of the attitudes about education, or education reform was driven by Shanker and his point of view. It was not a conciliatory time, it was very strained the relationships between the communities and you of course had riots.