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

Charles Warfield, Jr.

Broadcasting executive Charles M. Warfield, Jr. was born in in Washington, D.C. in 1949. Warfield attended Hampton University and graduated from there with his B.S. degree in accounting in 1971.

Upon graduating, Warfield began his career as a staff auditor at Ernst & Young, and then joined RCA Corporation as supervising senior auditor in 1974. Warfield’s broadcasting career includes managing some of New York City’s top radio stations including twelve years at Inner City Broadcasting Corporation (ICBC). He joined ICBC as a corporate controller and was promoted to vice president and general manager of WBLS-FM and WLIB-AM Radio. Warfield was later hired at Summit Broadcasting Corporation, where he served as vice president and general manager of WRKS-FM Radio in New York City.

In July of 1997, Warfield was appointed as the vice president and general manager of heritage stations at WDAS-AM/FM in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He later became the senior vice president of urban regional operations for Chancellor Media Corporation in March of 1998, with oversight of KKBT-FM in Los Angeles, California; WJLB-FM and WMXD-FM in Detroit, Michigan; WGCI-AM/FM and WVAZ-FM in Chicago, Illinois; WUSL-FM and WDAS-FM in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; and WEDR-FM in Miami, Florida. Warfield was promoted to senior vice president of regional operations in October of 1998, and assumed responsibility for Chancellor Media Corporation’s thirty stations in Chicago, Cleveland, Philadelphia, Atlanta, Miami and Puerto Rico. From 1997 to 2003, Warfield served as senior vice president of regional operations for AMFM, Inc.; and, from 2000 to 2012, he served as vice president and chief operating officer of Inner City Broadcasting Holdings, Inc. In October of 2012, Warfield was named president and chief operating officer of YMF Media, LLC.

In 2009, Warfield was elected president of the Metropolitan Kalamazoo Branch of the NAACP. The following year, he was appointed as the chairman for the National Association of Broadcasters board of directors. He also served on the Radio Advertising Bureau Executive Committee. Warfield’s community involvement includes organizations such as the American Red Cross, the National Urban League, the Salvation Army, the United Negro College Fund, the Partnership for a Drug Free Greater New York and the Harlem Young Men’s Christian Association. In 2010, Warfield received the National Radio Award from the National Association of Broadcasters.

Charles M. Warfield Jr. was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on December 9, 2013.

Accession Number

A2013.281

Sex

Male

Interview Date

12/9/2013

Last Name

Warfield

Maker Category
Marital Status

Married

Middle Name

Morris

Occupation
Schools

Hampton University

James G. Birney Elementary School

Kramer Middle School

Thurgood Marshall Academy

Anacostia High School

Search Occupation Category
First Name

Charles

Birth City, State, Country

Washington

HM ID

WAR17

Favorite Season

Spring

State

District of Columbia

Favorite Vacation Destination

Saint Martin

Favorite Quote

Straight Talk Makes For $Straight Understanding

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

New York

Birth Date

9/10/1949

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

New York

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Fried Chicken

Short Description

Broadcast executive Charles Warfield, Jr. (1949 - ) served as president and chief operating officer of ICBC Broadcast Holdings, Inc., and as vice president and general manager of WBLS-FM and WLIB-AM Radio.

Employment

Ernst & Young

RCA Corporation

Inner City Broadcasting Corporation, Inc.

WBLS Radio

WLIB Radio

Summit Broadcasting Corporation/WRKS-FM

WDAS Radio

Chancellor Media Corporation

AMFM, Inc.

YMF Media, LLC

Medger Evers College

Uptown Records

Favorite Color

Black, Red

Timing Pairs
0,0:1070,21:5140,67:6460,83:18670,278:35722,553:37642,594:38506,607:38986,612:40042,666:49354,812:50506,832:50890,837:53770,868:54250,873:61520,905:63845,960:64220,966:65420,993:65720,998:66170,1006:66470,1011:67295,1025:71120,1087:71645,1111:72395,1128:72920,1139:73220,1144:76820,1203:79070,1244:79445,1249:81320,1292:81845,1300:90432,1416:90792,1422:91296,1431:92376,1450:96120,1525:99072,1571:99504,1579:99792,1584:102096,1632:102384,1637:103176,1654:108700,1682:109636,1697:110494,1714:113926,1800:114238,1809:114706,1816:115408,1828:115954,1836:120274,1874:123829,1931:124303,1938:127463,1995:128806,2023:134810,2131:135442,2140:139945,2211:140656,2223:140972,2228:148115,2275:151260,2325:156468,2347:157800,2365:158466,2378:158910,2386:162980,2485:164238,2511:165126,2526:166162,2560:166754,2571:167124,2580:172717,2613:173001,2618:179320,2749:180243,2770:181947,2799:183580,2824:184077,2833:184645,2843:184929,2848:186491,2884:187059,2893:187556,2902:187982,2910:188479,2919:188763,2924:189970,2943:196840,2983:197270,2989:197958,3000:198474,3008:198904,3014:199506,3022:202258,3071:202688,3077:203548,3090:203978,3096:205440,3122:206128,3134:206472,3139:207246,3149:209912,3169:212400,3177:214220,3210:215970,3253:217440,3282:217790,3291:218490,3302:218770,3307:219470,3318:220030,3327:221990,3363:222760,3376:224370,3400:225910,3428:226750,3442:227310,3451:228640,3479:229340,3493:236375,3557:236750,3563:238775,3609:239075,3614:241700,3681:242750,3690:245225,3716:248580,3737:249318,3748:250384,3777:251532,3792:253828,3844:260935,3942:264066,3988:269329,4036:270830,4067:271541,4077:274622,4131:279283,4209:279994,4223:280389,4229:280705,4234:281337,4244:283154,4285:283549,4291:284339,4303:286156,4334:286472,4339:287420,4361:288447,4378:288763,4383:297100,4511:299170,4546:302689,4608:302965,4613:307740,4646:310290,4694:310965,4712:311940,4723:316215,4806:316740,4815:317865,4838:318240,4844:320190,4882:321165,4897:321765,4907:326890,4960:333067,5130:333351,5135:335907,5189:336475,5199:336901,5206:341130,5241$0,0:2666,51:4214,67:5590,88:6192,96:6966,106:7654,116:10664,171:11180,179:11782,188:12470,198:12900,296:19522,380:22962,440:23392,446:31020,501:33676,544:35668,578:36332,586:43628,676:44852,689:49238,761:51788,812:52604,820:65102,1054:70496,1192:71627,1207:71975,1212:72671,1222:73019,1227:75977,1274:81476,1285:82212,1297:83132,1308:83776,1348:84144,1353:90676,1450:91596,1465:92056,1471:94746,1484:95406,1496:96528,1519:99036,1570:99498,1578:103260,1672:103524,1677:105768,1737:107682,1750:107946,1788:108210,1793:114142,1845:114470,1850:115208,1860:118078,1969:120374,2009:122342,2035:125954,2045:127430,2063:128988,2088:129316,2093:131038,2132:135936,2172:138696,2243:139708,2255:150808,2442:151188,2448:151568,2454:153088,2474:157420,2575:157800,2581:158104,2586:163652,2716:163956,2721:164640,2734:169011,2756:169564,2767:170433,2780:171697,2800:172487,2812:172803,2817:173435,2827:175884,2877:176358,2884:176990,2895:177306,2900:178017,2910:180071,2953:184320,2968:187610,3020:188080,3026:191840,3105:193156,3117:194096,3126:195224,3140:199232,3170:200752,3206:201208,3213:210382,3399:211006,3414:211552,3423:213034,3448:213580,3458:214360,3468:214828,3475:216934,3552:217948,3567:218260,3572:218806,3581:225120,3698
DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Charles Warfield, Jr.'s interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Charles Warfield, Jr. lists his favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Charles Warfield, Jr. describes his father's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Charles Warfield, Jr. remembers his father's death

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Charles Warfield, Jr. recalls spending the summers in Rappahannock County, Virginia

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Charles Warfield, Jr. describes his mother's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Charles Warfield, Jr. describes his mother's personality

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Charles Warfield, Jr. lists his siblings

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Charles Warfield, Jr. describes his earliest childhood memory

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Charles Warfield, Jr. describes the sights, sounds and smells of his childhood

Tape: 1 Story: 11 - Charles Warfield, Jr. recalls his early responsibilities

Tape: 1 Story: 12 - Charles Warfield, Jr. remembers his brother with Down syndrome

Tape: 1 Story: 13 - Charles Warfield, Jr. recalls his relationship with his twin brothers

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Charles Warfield, Jr. remembers his early education

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Charles Warfield, Jr. recalls his early experiences of religion

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Charles Warfield, Jr. remembers lessons from his father

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Charles Warfield, Jr. describes his family's holiday traditions

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Charles Warfield, Jr. remembers his childhood hobbies

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Charles Warfield, Jr. recalls his experiences at Kramer Junior High School in Washington, D.C.

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Charles Warfield, Jr. remembers Anacostia High School in Washington, D.C.

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Charles Warfield, Jr. remembers his early academic interests

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Charles Warfield, Jr. recalls his start at the Hampton Institute in Hampton, Virginia

Tape: 2 Story: 10 - Charles Warfield, Jr. describes his decision to major in accounting

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Charles Warfield, Jr. remembers the student protests at the Hampton Institute in Hampton, Virginia

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Charles Warfield, Jr. talks about the closure of the Hampton Institute in 1971

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Charles Warfield, Jr. reflects upon his time at the Hampton Institute

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Charles Warfield, Jr. recalls his decision not to live in Washington, D.C.

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Charles Warfield, Jr. talks about his work at S.D. Leidesdorf and Company

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Charles Warfield, Jr. recalls his work at the RCA Corporation

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Charles Warfield, Jr. remembers joining the staff of Medgar Evers College in Brooklyn, New York

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Charles Warfield, Jr. describes his career advice to African American youth

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Charles Warfield, Jr. remembers his transition to the broadcast industry

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Charles Warfield, Jr. remembers his interview at the Inner City Broadcasting Corporation

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Charles Warfield, Jr. recalls his duties at the Inner City Broadcasting Corporation

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Charles Warfield, Jr. remembers his coworkers at the Inner City Broadcasting Corporation

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Charles Warfield, Jr. talks about the influence of radio deejays

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Charles Warfield, Jr. remembers Frankie Crocker

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Charles Warfield, Jr. describes his role in station acquisitions at the Inner City Broadcasting Corporation

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Charles Warfield, Jr. talks about his contributions to the African American community

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Charles Warfield, Jr. recalls his promotion to vice president and general manager of the Inner City Broadcasting Corporation

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Charles Warfield, Jr. remembers developing the Inner City Broadcasting Corporation's human resources system

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Charles Warfield, Jr. talks about the process of acquiring a radio station

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Charles Warfield, Jr. describes the challenges of managing a nationwide media company

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Charles Warfield, Jr. describes the impact of recessions on the black radio industry

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Charles Warfield, Jr. talks about the Quiet Storm radio format

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Charles Warfield, Jr. remembers the competitors to the Inner City Broadcasting Corporation

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Charles Warfield, Jr. recalls his decision to leave the Inner City Broadcasting Corporation, pt. 1

Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Charles Warfield, Jr. recalls his decision to leave the Inner City Broadcasting Corporation, pt. 2

Tape: 5 Story: 9 - Charles Warfield, Jr. reflects upon his decision to join WRKS Radio

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Charles Warfield, Jr. remember Barry A. Mayo

Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Charles Warfield, Jr. remembers developing the audience of WRKS Radio

Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Charles Warfield, Jr. remembers his changes at WRKS Radio

Tape: 6 Story: 4 - Charles Warfield, Jr. talks about his career at WRKS Radio

Tape: 6 Story: 5 - Charles Warfield, Jr. recalls his departure from WRKS Radio

Tape: 6 Story: 6 - Charles Warfield, Jr. describes his attempts to invest in a radio station

Tape: 6 Story: 7 - Charles Warfield, Jr. remembers working for Uptown Records

Tape: 6 Story: 8 - Charles Warfield, Jr. talks about Uptown Records

Tape: 6 Story: 9 - Charles Warfield, Jr. recalls joining the Chancellor Media Corporation

Tape: 6 Story: 10 - Charles Warfield, Jr. recalls managing the Chancellor Media Corporation's urban radio stations

Tape: 7 Story: 1 - Charles Warfield, Jr. talks about the longevity of WVON Radio

Tape: 7 Story: 2 - Charles Warfield, Jr. talks about the role of syndication in the radio business

Tape: 7 Story: 3 - Charles Warfield, Jr. talks about the importance of community relationships in the radio business

Tape: 7 Story: 4 - Charles Warfield, Jr. describes his experiences as senior vice president of the Chancellor Media Corporation

Tape: 7 Story: 5 - Charles Warfield, Jr. recalls his return to the Inner City Broadcasting Corporation

Tape: 7 Story: 6 - Charles Warfield, Jr. remembers the financial crisis of 2008

Tape: 7 Story: 7 - Charles Warfield, Jr. talks about changes in the radio market

Tape: 7 Story: 8 - Charles Warfield, Jr. remembers the introduction of the portable people meter

Tape: 7 Story: 9 - Charles Warfield, Jr. talks about competition from satellite radio

Tape: 8 Story: 1 - Charles Warfield, Jr. recalls serving on the executive committee of the National Association of Broadcasters

Tape: 8 Story: 2 - Charles Warfield, Jr. remembers the conflict between Cathy Hughes and Dionne Warwick

Tape: 8 Story: 3 - Charles Warfield, Jr. talks about the bankruptcy of the Inner City Broadcasting Corporation

Tape: 8 Story: 4 - Charles Warfield, Jr. remembers the divestiture of the Inner City Broadcasting Corporation's assets

Tape: 8 Story: 5 - Charles Warfield, Jr. describes the underrepresentation of African American radio executives

Tape: 8 Story: 6 - Charles Warfield, Jr. talks about the dissolution of the Inner City Broadcasting Corporation

Tape: 8 Story: 7 - Charles Warfield, Jr. talks about his plans for the future

Tape: 8 Story: 8 - Charles Warfield, Jr. talks about the future of black broadcasting

Tape: 9 Story: 1 - Charles Warfield, Jr. remembers his contributions to the broadcasting industry

Tape: 9 Story: 2 - Charles Warfield, Jr. describes his hopes and concerns for African Americans in the radio industry

Tape: 9 Story: 3 - Charles Warfield, Jr. talks about the future of the radio industry

Tape: 9 Story: 4 - Charles Warfield, Jr. reflects upon his career

Tape: 9 Story: 5 - Charles Warfield, Jr. reflects upon his legacy

Tape: 9 Story: 6 - Charles Warfield, Jr. reflects upon his success

Tape: 9 Story: 7 - Charles Warfield, Jr. narrates his photographs, pt. 1

Tape: 9 Story: 8 - Charles Warfield, Jr. narrates his photographs, pt. 2

DASession

1$1

DATape

4$6

DAStory

2$10

DATitle
Charles Warfield, Jr. recalls his duties at the Inner City Broadcasting Corporation
Charles Warfield, Jr. recalls managing the Chancellor Media Corporation's urban radio stations
Transcript
Can you describe the organization you're coming into; and who, who some of the key players are, and, and what--because at this point--let's see--Inner City [Inner City Broadcasting Corporation] began--I thought it began in (simultaneous)--$$ (Simultaneous) Began in '72 [1972] with--$$It's--$$ --the AM--'74 [1974] with the FM [WBLS Radio, New York, New York], and by '75 [1975], '76 [1976], going into '77 [1977], FM had overtaken AM as the primary band for entertainment on the radio. And I was a bit star struck when I--when I first went into the company. I had--you're listening to the radio in New York City [New York, New York], and I listened to a lot of radio. And I'm, I'm here with the home of Frankie Crocker and Ken Webb and [HistoryMaker] Vy Higginsen on the air. It's--this is Percy Sutton's company. This is a high profile job opportunity in New York City. So you're, you're struck with that. You have the artists that come through the radio station that you would see from time to time coming to pay homage quite honestly to the man, Frankie Crocker. There was also [HistoryMaker] Hal Jackson, who was there as a vice chairman of the country--company. And Pepe--Pierre--Percy Sutton, who was running for mayor of New York City against Ed Koch, was in and out. And Charles Rangel [HistoryMaker Charles B. Rangel] was in and out; and [HistoryMaker] Basil Paterson was in and out. And, and these kinds of people were in the environment all the time. David Lampel, who was the news director--people that you would hear on the radio, and now I'm here in this company, and it--yeah, it made--it made me feel very good. It was an important job, but then the reality of the work that you're facing, you know, sort of hits you in the face and says you got a real job here. All this was before computers. Records were maintained on handwritten cards, receivable cards. Human error was involved. They had a manual system for putting commercials on the air. And once the commercial ran--getting the commercial on an invoice and being billed, and how they handled the collection of money and offsets against accounts receivable, and, and the, the manual--our means of processing checks. There was a real need for the job at that point, and I embraced that, and I--and I worked hard as I was taught to always do--gained the confidence of, of people. One thing I learned at this point--and I, I guess I was learning it along the way is that I'm very good at the numbers; I understand the numbers; I can explain the numbers, but I wanted more in my life. I also had an interest in engaging with people. I wanted to learn the business, but I wanted to do more than be in the--the bean counter that's upstairs or downstairs or around the corner in accounting. And prep--Percy Sutton, when he lost the race for mayor and came into the company as chairman of the company, began to give me more and more responsibility and respect and, and counted on me. In the first year I was there I spent working with a consultant to the company, had engaged to raise money to buy radio stations in other cities, which was a very difficult thing to do in 1977 because African Americans--one you're in radio; you--it's a business you don't know because the entrepreneurs in radio at that point were successful business people in either arenas who are now investing in radio were not seasoned broadcasters, and they were surrounded by seasoned broadcasters. So we didn't have a lot of confidence in financial institutions to lend us money. But the first year I was there working with a consultant we were able to convince Citibank [Citibank, N.A.] to lend the company $15 million, which in 1978 allowed the company to buy an FM station in Detroit [Michigan], an AM/FM station in San Francisco [California], and an AM/FM station in Los Angeles [California] and get change back. Now today, you can't buy WLIB [WLIB Radio] in New York today for anything approaching--uh, maybe $15 million today you possibly could, but there's a valuation today that's totally different from what it was in, in those days. But I gained the confidence of, of Dorothy Brunson and, and Percy Sutton at that point, and he allowed me to learn more about the business and become more involved in, in other aspects and ultimately appointed me as the vice president and general manager of Inner City Broadcasting [Inner City Broadcasting Corporation] in 1981, replacing his son [HistoryMaker Pierre Sutton], who was de facto in that position and had been in that position when Dorothy Brunson left to run her own company. I will always be thankful to Inner City Broadcasting, to Percy Sutton. I don't believe that had I been a controller working for CBS or NBC or, or the other broadcast companies I would have ever been given an opportunity. And I've never taken that for granted, giving me the opportunity to learn the business. As I say, I learned the business from the bottom up. I learned the business from a P and L [profit and loss] perspective: here's how much money we're gonna make but understanding well, how do we get there? And it's because of the trust that he in- that he showed in me during my tenure there with Inner City Broadcasting.$One of the challenges--and, and I--and I take this seriously, with being one of the few African Americans given the opportunities that I've been given in this industry, I have to speak on behalf of those that did not get the opportunity that I have. I have to speak on behalf of the communities that we serve. And when I started with this company, I mentioned that it grew from roughly twenty-five stations to ninety-six. And they had a staff meeting in Phoenix, Arizona, where they brought in the managers of all of all ninety-six of their radio operations. Six of us were African American out of these ninety-six managers. And I'm--and I'm in the room, and there's six people whose careers I followed-- Verna Greene in Detroit [Michigan]; [HistoryMaker] Jerry Rushin in Miami [Florida]. There was not an African American in, in Phila- in Los Angeles [California]. I'm running DAS [WDAS Radio, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania] AM and FM. Chester Schofield was running Power [WUSL Radio] in Philadelphia [Pennsylvania]. [HistoryMaker] Marv Dyson was running GCI [WGCI Radio] in, in MXD [WMXD Radio, Detroit, Michigan]--I mean, GCI in--$$In Chicago [Illinois].$$ --in Chicago. Legendary individuals in this business, very successful in their own right, and they're all under this umbrella of Chancellor Media [Chancellor Media Corporation] at this point. In '98 [1998], I was approached by Jimmy deCastro as to whether I would be interested in overseeing the urban properties. Because I'm challenging them every opportunity I get, why aren't there more qualified African Americans that you can hire to run some of these radio properties, not just urban. I can run more than urban. That's what I run; that's what I'm comfortable with; that's what I been challenged to do and I've been successful at, but there need--there's the need for more diversity here. And you, you--if you're in the room where you can have the conversation, you have a responsibility to have the conversation. They gave me an opportunity for about six months to oversee the urban operations, so I was not only running DAS AM and FM in Philly, I was also over Power in Philadelphia. I was overseeing EDR [WEDR Radio, Miami, Florida] in Miami [Florida], Marv's stations in Chicago, ZAK [WZAK Radio] in, in Cleveland [Ohio]--there are two stations in Cleveland--the Beat [KKBT Radio; KRRL Radio] in L.A. [Los Angeles, California]. I had--we had ten of the top urban radio stations in America under Chancellor Media that I had an opportunity to be involved with. In my, my under--what I do, I don't tell them how to run their radio stations. I can't tell Marv Dyson how to run a radio station. He's been doing that successfully for more years than I have. It's how do we help bring resources to help these stations continue to grow under the banner of Chancellor Media? And from there a few months later with some corporate changes, I was given an opportunity to, to drop the urban operations title, and I took on a cluster of thirty radio stations for Chancellor Media, AMFM [AMFM, Inc.], which concluded all of their stations in Chicago, Philadelphia, Cleveland, Atlanta [Georgia], Miami, and Puerto Rico. So I had a thirty station region that I was responsible for which was all different types of formats--$$That's--$$ -- (Unclear) (simultaneous)--$$--(simultaneous)huge then. So what--how long did you do that?$$ I did that for about a year and a half, until the announced merger with, with Clear Channel [Clear Channel Communications, Inc.]. And I had an opportunity to stay with the company or to leave; and I exercised an option to leave (simultaneous).$$(Simultaneous) To leave (audio disturbance).

Harold Lewis

Resturant owner and operator Harold Lewis and his wife, Tina Lewis, have managed twenty McDonald’s resaturant franchises since 1987. Lewis’s father was the sole-proprietor of one of the largest African American-owned contracting firms in Los Angeles, California. Following the death of his father at age seven, Lewis’ and his mother kept the business going along with an uncle.

In 1972, Lewis met his wife, Tina Lewis, while working in the airline industry. Lewis was employed with United Airlines in management positions in sales and human resources; Tina worked as a flight attendant and an in-flight services instructor with United Airlines and Continental Airlines, respectively. In 1982, Lewis and his wife embarked on their first business venture when they purchased a Sir Speedy Printing franchise in Los Angeles. Lewis co-managed the business for four years and assisted in winning a printing contract with the U.S. Olympics Committee. He and his wife sold the Sir Speedy Printing franchise in 1986 and began the process of becoming McDonald’s restaurant franchise owners and operators. In 1987, Lewis and his wife established HRL Group, LLC and opened their first McDonald’s restaurant franchise in Sand Diego, California. From 1987 to 2011, HRL Group, LLC operated twenty McDonald’s restaurants.

Lewis has been a leader in the San Diego County McDonald’s Operators Association. As a community leader, he has contributed numerous hours and resources to a variety of community organizations and causes. In 1993, Lewis and his wife founded The African American Visionary and Inspirational Leaders (AVAIL) Scholarship Program, which has awarded more than $550,000 to graduating high school seniors in the San Diego County. In addition, Lewis and his wife have provided scholarships through the Trumpet Foundation in Atlanta, Georgia.

The McDonald’s Corporation has recognized Lewis’ contributions by bestowing upon him the distinguished “Ronald Award” which honors operators for outstanding service to the community. Lewis is also a recipient of the McDonald’s “Outstanding Store Award,” one of the companies highest regarded achievements.

Lewis lives in Las Vegas, Nevada with his wife, Tina Lewis. They have three children: Jeremy Lewis (a second generation McDonald’s restaurant franchise owner and operator), and twins, Jonathan Lewis and Jennifer Lewis.

Harold Lewis was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on November 23, 2013.

Accession Number

A2013.324

Sex

Male

Interview Date

11/23/2013

Last Name

Lewis

Maker Category
Marital Status

Married

Middle Name

Roscoe

Schools

Sixth Avenue Elementary School

Los Angeles High School

Admiral Arthur W Radford High School

Los Angeles City College

California State University, Los Angeles

First Name

Harold

Birth City, State, Country

Los Angeles

HM ID

LEW17

Favorite Season

Summer

State

California

Favorite Vacation Destination

Acapulco, Mexico

Favorite Quote

To whom

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Nevada

Birth Date

10/8/1947

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Las Vegas

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Liver, Onions

Short Description

Restaurant owner and operator Harold Lewis (1947 - )

Employment

HRL Group, LLC

Sir Speedy Printing

United Airlines

Favorite Color

Blue

Byron Lewis

Advertising CEO Byron E. Lewis Sr., was born on December 25, 1931 in Newark, New Jersey to Thomas Eugene and Myrtle Allen Lewis. Growing up in Queens, New York, Lewis graduated from Shimer Junior High School and John Adams High School. In 1953, he received his B.A. degree in journalism from Long Island University.

Upon graduation, Lewis served in the United States Army, and then held a variety of jobs, including social work, before launching his advertising career. In 1961, he was hired as an advertising sales representative for Citizen Call and Urbanite Magazine. Lewis also worked for Amalgamated Publications, and later became vice president, director of advertising at Tuesday magazine from 1963 until 1968. In 1969, Lewis established UniWorld Group, Inc., the nation’s oldest multicultural advertising agency. Following UniWorld’s initial success, he expanded the agency and created UniWorld Entertainment in 1977, UniWorld Hispanic (Unimundo) in 1980, and UniWorld Healthcare in 2002. UniWorld’s clients have included AT&T, Avon Products, Burger King, Colgate Palmolive, Eastman Kodak, Ford Motor Co., Mars Candy, Stax Record Shaft film series, and the United States Marine Corps. Lewis also worked on the Black Political Summit in 1972, Kenneth Gibson’s mayoral campaign in 1971, and Reverend Jesse Jackson’s first presidential campaign in 1984. He created and produced a number of national media productions, including Sounds of the City, a Black radio serial; America’s Black Forum; and This Far By Faith, a PBS film. Lewis also founded the American Black Film Festival, formerly known as the Acapulco Black Film Festival. In 2012, he retired and became UniWorld’s Chairman Emeritus.

Lewis has received numerous awards and honors. He received Black Enterprise’s AG Gaston Lifetime Achievement Award, and was named one of Long Island University’s Alumni of Distinction. Lewis has been inducted into the American Advertising Federation’s Advertising Hall of Fame, Omega Psi Phi’s Hall of Fame, and the AdColor Hall of Fame. He has also received an honorary doctorate degree from Adelphi University. Lewis has served on the boards of the Apollo Theater Foundation, the Jackie Robinson Educational Foundation, the NYC Mission Society, the Phoenix House Foundation, and Long Island University.

Lewis is married to Sylvia Wong Lewis. He has one son: Byron Eugene Lewis, Jr.

Byron Lewis was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on October 23, 2013.

Accession Number

A2013.265

Sex

Male

Interview Date

10/23/2013 |and| 10/24/2013

Last Name

Lewis

Maker Category
Marital Status

Married

Schools

Shimer Junior High School

John Adams High School

Long Island University

First Name

Byron

Birth City, State, Country

Newark

HM ID

LEW16

Favorite Season

Summer

State

New Jersey

Favorite Vacation Destination

Sag Harbor

Favorite Quote

Nothing is better than an idea whose time has come.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

New York

Birth Date

12/25/1931

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

New York

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Pie (Apple)

Short Description

Business chief executive Byron Lewis (1931 - ) is the founder of UniWorld Group, Inc., the nation’s oldest multicultural advertising company.

Employment

Citizen Call

Urbanite Magazine

Amalgamated Publishers

Tuesday Magazine

UniWorld Group, Inc.

Favorite Color

All Colors

Patricia Russell-McCloud

Motivational speaker Patricia Russell-McCloud was born on September 14, 1946, in Indianapolis, Indiana to Willie and Janiel Russell. The youngest of three daughters, Russell-McCloud delivered her first major speech at the age of eight, before the convention of the African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church convention in Los Angeles. In 1964, Russell-McCloud graduated from Shortridge High School in Indianapolis and went on to receive her B.A. degree in history in 1968 from Kentucky State University in Frankfort, Kentucky. In 1970, she enrolled at the Howard University School of Law and received her J.D. degree in 1973.

In 1973, Russell-McCloud began working for the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in Washington D.C and by 1974, she was involved in a recommendation to the U.S. Department of Justice that eventually led to the Supreme Court case United States vs. AT&T , which broke up what was then the largest monopoly in the United States. Russell-McCloud received several promotions, eventually becoming the head of the Complaints Branch within the Broadcast Division of the FCC. In 1982, she met E. Earl McCloud, a minister and military science instructor at Alabama A&M University and they married in 1983. That same year, she left the FCC to begin her own motivational speaking business, Russell-McCloud Associates.

Over the past 27 years, Russell-McCloud has become one of the most sought-after motivational speakers in the nation. Her clients include McDonalds, the United States Navy, Coca-Cola, United Auto Workers and a host of other prominent companies. Black Enterprise Magazine named her the fifth best motivational speaker in 1998. From 1994 to 1998, Russell-McCloud served as president of the Links, Inc. Her book, A is for Attitude: An Alphabet for Living was published in 1999, and she has released an audio CD of her speeches entitled Never Give Up and a separate recording of her speech The Power of Connecting . Russell-McCloud has received numerous honors, including the keys to more than 300 cities.

Accession Number

A2011.028

Sex

Female

Interview Date

4/20/2011

Last Name

Russell-McCloud

Maker Category
Marital Status

Married

Schools

Shortridge High School

Kentucky State University

Family Development Services

Howard University School of Law

First Name

Patricia

Birth City, State, Country

Indianapolis

HM ID

RUS08

Favorite Season

Spring

State

Indiana

Favorite Vacation Destination

Africa

Favorite Quote

Whatever You're Going Through It's A Temporary Inconvenience For A Permanent Improvement.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Georgia

Birth Date

9/14/1946

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Atlanta

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Salad

Short Description

Motivational speaker and lawyer Patricia Russell-McCloud (1946 - ) was a Federal Communications Commission attorney, the president of The Links, Inc. and a motivational speaker.

Employment

Russell-McCloud Associates

Federal Communications Commission (FCC)

Indianapolis Public Schools System

Detroit Public Schools System

Favorite Color

Purple

Timing Pairs
0,0:486,14:1053,23:2592,49:9258,129:14006,203:14838,212:16190,304:16606,309:17334,317:17750,324:18478,333:22866,366:24998,411:26556,444:27212,454:27622,461:28032,467:29016,484:31148,516:32542,536:33198,547:33936,557:35002,576:42500,635:43592,650:44348,661:51931,791:52735,805:55445,827:60336,883:67664,954:68432,967:78137,1075:81350,1099:82442,1113:87902,1190:88406,1198:88826,1204:89498,1214:91850,1262:92354,1272:100444,1363:103301,1391:104273,1408:105731,1432:111186,1491:117490,1527:118192,1537:118504,1542:118816,1547:119518,1558:120454,1572:121156,1582:121468,1587:123262,1619:123886,1626:124198,1642:124666,1653:124978,1658:126304,1685:129892,1752:133290,1766:134280,1780:134640,1785:138780,1876:141888,1894:142370,1900$0,0:4884,121:5316,128:7476,171:8196,182:10068,223:15548,268:18584,334:20033,360:24794,485:29458,511:39508,640:41089,671:41461,676:48250,837:50761,873:55797,891:58610,935:59483,944:60453,956:65012,1024:66079,1039:67340,1064:67728,1069:71960,1084:72506,1093:76406,1185:84480,1247:84980,1254:93060,1369:98400,1500:105530,1560:105822,1565:113694,1686:149532,2234:150568,2251:151420,2283
DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Patricia Russell-McCloud's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Patricia Russell-McCloud lists her favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Patricia Russell-McCloud describes her father's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Patricia Russell-McCloud describes her father's personality

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Patricia Russell-McCloud describes her mother's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Patricia Russell-McCloud lists her siblings

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Patricia Russell-McCloud describes the Haughville neighborhood of Indianapolis, Indiana

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Patricia Russell-McCloud describes her earliest childhood memory

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Patricia Russell-McCloud describes the sights, sounds and smells of her childhood

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Patricia Russell-McCloud remembers the Woodrow Wilson School No. 75 in Indianapolis, Indiana

Tape: 1 Story: 11 - Patricia Russell-McCloud recalls her social activities

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Patricia Russell-McCloud remembers speaking at a national meeting of the A.M.E. Zion church, pt. 1

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Patricia Russell-McCloud talks about her early influences

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Patricia Russell-McCloud remembers speaking at a national meeting of the A.M.E. Zion church, pt. 2

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Patricia Russell-McCloud recalls the assassination of President John Fitzgerald Kennedy

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Patricia Russell-McCloud talks about segregation in Indianapolis, Indiana

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Patricia Russell-McCloud describes the music of her childhood, pt. 1

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Patricia Russell-McCloud talks about Revered Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Patricia Russell-McCloud describes the music of her childhood, pt. 2

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Patricia Russell-McCloud talks about her experiences at Short Ridge High School in Indianapolis, Indiana

Tape: 2 Story: 10 - Patricia Russell-McCloud recalls her decision to attend Kentucky State College in Frankfort, Kentucky

Tape: 2 Story: 11 - Patricia Russell-McCloud remembers joining the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority

Tape: 2 Story: 12 - Patricia Russell-McCloud describes her academic experiences at Kentucky State College

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Patricia Russell-McCloud describes the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority's service activities

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Patricia Russell-McCloud talks about her decision to attend the Howard University School of Law

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Patricia Russell-McCloud remembers the assassination of Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Patricia Russell-McCloud recalls her time at the Howard University School of Law

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Patricia Russell-McCloud remembers her peers and professors at Howard University

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Patricia Russell-McCloud recalls joining the Federal Communications Commission

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Patricia Russell-McCloud describes her work at the Federal Communications Commission

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Patricia Russell-McCloud describes her role as the chief of complaints at the Federal Communications Commission

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Patricia Russell-McCloud remembers organizing a conference of black-owned broadcast networks

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Patricia Russell-McCloud remembers her retirement from the Federal Communications Commission

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Patricia Russell-McCloud talks about her membership in The Links

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Patricia Russell-McCloud recalls the history of The Links, Incorporated

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Patricia Russell-McCloud reflects upon her legacy at The Links, Incorporated

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Patricia Russell-McCloud describes programs during her presidency of The Links, Incorporated

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Patricia Russell-McCloud talks about meeting Elizabeth Catlett

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Patricia Russell-McCloud recalls her changes to The Links' policies

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Patricia Russell-McCloud talks about her husband

Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Patricia Russell-McCloud recalls her decision to become a motivational speaker

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Patricia Russell-McCloud recalls her start as a motivational speaker

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Patricia Russell-McCloud talks about her mentorship program

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Patricia Russell-McCloud remembers writing 'A Is for Attitude: An Alphabet for Living'

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Patricia Russell-McCloud talks about her stage play, 'Keep Rising'

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Patricia Russell-McCloud describes her philanthropic activities

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Patricia Russell-McCloud talks about her inspirational CD, 'Never Give Up'

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Patricia Russell-McCloud talks about her role as a bishop's wife

Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Patricia Russell-McCloud talks about her favorite motivational speakers

Tape: 5 Story: 9 - Patricia Russell-McCloud talks about her awards

Tape: 5 Story: 10 - Patricia Russell-McCloud reflects upon her life

Tape: 5 Story: 11 - Patricia Russell-McCloud shares a message to future generations

Tape: 5 Story: 12 - Patricia Russell-McCloud reflects upon her legacy

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Patricia Russell-McCloud narrates her photographs.

DASession

1$1

DATape

2$5

DAStory

10$3

DATitle
Patricia Russell-McCloud recalls her decision to attend Kentucky State College in Frankfort, Kentucky
Patricia Russell-McCloud remembers writing 'A Is for Attitude: An Alphabet for Living'
Transcript
So how do you begin to prepare for college? You think you may want to be an attorney, but you're not sure. How do you begin to prepare to go to college? Who's there to help you?$$My godmother went to Kentucky State [Kentucky State College; Kentucky State University, Frankfort, Kentucky], and she was very hopeful that I would be willing to be interviewed by the recruiter when he came. She was telling him that I was a speaker, that I was smart and that I could sing, and that I could be on any or all of those scholarships and it would be a wonderful experience. So I listened and I met the recruiter when he came, among other recruiters who came to my school [Shortridge High School, Indianapolis, Indiana], but I met him. But he told me about a man named Dr. Henry E. Cheaney and that he was a history and political science professor at Kentucky State. So I did all this research on Dr. Henry E. Cheaney. Excuse me. He was renowned. And I said, "Oh, I have to study under him, I just have to go there." And the choir, the concert choir of Kentucky State, was traveling all over and, including New York, inclu- I mean everywhere. And they were under a master director. And many of those people in that choir have gone on to be in operas and all that. So then I said, "Oh, I want to be in that choir." And, so then I looked at some of the other professors. One of the top speech and drama persons, Dr. Winona Lee Fletcher, was at Kentucky State. And when I went to their campus, I loved it. Rolling hills, buildings that were welcoming, attitudes and behaviors that were embracing. I'd never been around that many black people who were educated and had a mind to encourage me to be my best and to achieve against the odds and all that. And it wasn't so far from Indianapolis [Indiana] that if, if anything else, you could catch a bus and go home. So I selected Kentucky State.$You also are an author?$$Yes, yes (simultaneous).$$(Simultaneous) Tell me about your book.$$I--one day I received a call from a literary agent and she asked me had I ever considered writing. I said, "I consider it all the time, but I just haven't had time." And she said, I said, "The only thing I can think of offhand--." She was thinking a compilation of speeches would be a book. And I said, "I'm sure that's true, but I don't have time to put all that together." I said, "One thing they love, they, my audiences, they love this thing I wrote called the alphabet." She said, "What is it?" I said, "It's A to Z, and it is the walk away." Even at, even when I'm with corporations, they said, "Will you do the alphabet?" I said, "The alphabet is not in this speech." They said, "But would you just do it?" I said, "You're the client, of course I'll do it." And every letter is a word of empowerment, attitude, brain power, courage, dedication, preparation, now, all of that. And it just goes (makes sound) like that. It goes very quickly, and people just cannot believe that I'm going through the whole alphabet in a new form and way. So she said, "I believe that every chapter is a letter." And I said, "Really?" Attitude, brain power, courage. So she said, "Write me an outline of three chapters. Write me an outline of your book and then write me three chapters and then I'll shop it." And she did, and the book became bestselling. And she said, she called me one day and she said, "I don't want to blow your mind." And I said, "Okay, what happened?" Like I said, I had dismissed it, you know, what's this? She said, "We shopped it to five houses, publishing houses in New York [New York], and--," I'm sorry, "--we shopped it to seven, and five bought the book. Five bid the book."$$Tell me the name of the book again.$$'A Is for Attitude: An Alphabet for Living' [Patricia Russell-McCloud].$$And what year was it published?$$Ninety-nine [1999].$$Ninety-nine [1999]$$And that--then it was re-launched last month, because it was bestselling. And then they changed the cover, the forward, and the acknowledgements.$$Who wrote the forward?$$Margot James Copeland [HistoryMaker Margot Copeland], the national president of The Links [The Links, Incorporated].

Rodney Reed

Educator Rodney Reed was born on May 16, 1932 in New Orleans, Louisiana to Ursul and Edgar Reed. He received his B.A. degree from Clark College in 1951, and his M.Mus. degree in music education from the University of Michigan in 1956.

Upon graduation, he accepted a position at Southern University as an assistant professor of music and associate conductor of University bands. In 1961, Reed moved to Oakland, California, where he served as a junior high school music teacher and department head and principal of the summer music recreation program in the Oakland Unified School District before becoming Vice Principal of King Junior High School.

Reed graduated from the University of California, Berkeley in 1970 with his Ph.D. degree in educational policy, planning, and administration. He then joined the faculty of the University’s Graduate School of Education, becoming only the second tenure track professorial appointment in the school’s history at that time, and ascended the ranks to become a full professor. In 1973, Reed was appointed as assistant research educator, Program in International Education Finance, during which time he conducted studies in Liberia, West Africa. In 1976, he was appointed as chair of the division of education administration in the school of education, and in 1989, was elected for a three year term as chair of the university’s Graduate School of Education faculty.

While at Berkeley, Reed served on two Academic Senate Committees; was a co-founder of the University’s Professional Development Program; was an initial member of the Board of Directors of the Young Musicians Program; co-director of the University of California/Oakland Unified School District Teacher Corps Project; and founded the University’s Annual Institute for School Administrators.

In January, 1990, he assumed the position of Pennsylvania Professor of Education and Dean of The College of Education at Pennsylvania State University and became that University’s first black senior academic administrator. While at Penn State, he was elected to serve a two-year term as chair of the academic council of deans. In 1994 he officially resigned from the University of California, Berkeley and was named professor emeritus. In 1998 he retired as dean of Penn State and was awarded the title of dean and professor emeritus, College of education.

Reed has published numerous articles examining the education system in America and has served on the editorial boards of a number scholarly journals. From 1991 to 1994 he was host of the television program, Touching the Future. He has served in leadership positions in the American Educational Research Association, and on the board of directors of the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education, the San Francisco-Bay Area Urban League, and the National Association of Secondary School Principals. He was also a member of the Pennsylvania Governor’s “Pennsylvania 2000” board to chart the future of education in that state.

He has received many awards including resolutions from the California Assembly and the California Senate, the State of California Speaker of the Assembly Willie J. Brown Jr. plaque for his service to the educational system of California, and the 1992 Alumnus of the Year Award from the Black Alumni club of the California Alumni Association. In addition, The Rodney J. and Vernell A. Reed scholarship in urban education has been established in the Pennsylvania State University College of Education.

Reed is married to Vernell Auzenne Reed. They have two adult children: Karen and Ursula.

Rodney Reed was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on March 8, 2011.

Accession Number

A2011.002

Sex

Male

Interview Date

3/8/2011

Last Name

Reed

Maker Category
Marital Status

Married

Middle Name

J.

Occupation
Schools

Joseph A. Craig School

Gilbert Academy

Clark Atlanta University

University of Michigan

University of California, Berkeley Graduate School of Education

First Name

Rodney

Birth City, State, Country

New Orleans

HM ID

REE06

Favorite Season

Fall

State

Louisiana

Favorite Vacation Destination

Negril, Jamaica
Florence, Italy

Favorite Quote

The Future Belongs To Those That Believe In The Beauty Of Their Dreams.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

California

Birth Date

5/16/1932

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Bay Area/Oakland

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Gumbo (Louisiana)

Short Description

Educator Rodney Reed (1932 - ) served on the faculty of the University of California, Berkeley Graduate School of Education, and as dean of the Pennsylvania State University College of Education. In 2010 he was elected as Grand Sire Archon of the Boule.

Employment

Southern University Baton Rouge

Havenscourt Junior High School

King Junior High School

University of California, Berkeley

University of Rhode Island in Kingston

Pennsylvania State University

Favorite Color

Blue

Timing Pairs
0,0:1826,46:14080,217:18595,257:20341,281:21311,292:24030,318:41690,510:50572,576:52868,611:58470,662:62184,681:62898,686:70905,775:75196,803:90470,1051:91142,1060:94166,1112:94838,1121:103810,1210:105154,1234:107833,1259:111220,1274:112093,1285:112481,1290:114430,1296:115726,1318:116698,1332:117265,1347:118804,1381:119452,1394:120019,1402:122773,1501:129415,1628:129820,1634:136160,1682:136706,1691:137252,1700:139323,1718:141554,1760:142718,1781:148452,1843:158376,1936:159184,1948:162778,1989:172252,2166:174430,2178:184946,2337:187268,2381:188730,2395:189246,2402:190622,2461:204380,2605:207380,2662:207755,2668:208055,2673:208355,2678:210005,2710:213520,2723:214430,2738:215130,2753:215900,2770:217370,2785:218770,2840:220450,2871:221080,2882:225194,2898:227246,2934:245836,3250:251928,3282:255760,3314:256312,3324:261980,3384:262508,3391:263212,3400:264004,3434:264972,3444:265676,3453:273110,3551:273782,3562:279238,3663:291805,3887:292105,3892:293455,3936:293830,3942:298257,3980:298662,3986:303370,4054$0,0:7660,44:8260,51:21066,285:22602,302:28230,320:28686,330:30966,389:31574,398:32942,516:35222,565:36134,576:36666,584:36970,593:37958,612:38414,619:45006,671:45398,676:46084,684:46770,692:52500,737:52820,742:53940,761:54660,771:57140,811:57540,817:59380,869:61060,902:62100,925:62500,931:64020,963:73894,1039:74632,1049:75288,1058:85860,1232:88935,1305:92884,1362:95744,1392:96998,1411:97526,1420:98516,1440:99968,1473:103157,1505:103442,1511:104126,1524:104639,1535:114842,1664:116533,1691:117156,1702:119470,1727:143630,2077:144140,2085:144905,2095:160468,2277:162052,2318:166266,2368:166722,2378:168850,2444:169230,2450:176556,2545:194334,2669:197655,2732:198384,2743:199923,2767:200652,2777:201138,2788:202110,2801:203001,2814:206390,2825:209126,2887:210722,2918:211558,2931:212394,2944:213078,2956:217730,3001:218310,3007:219006,3014:220050,3023:220630,3029:225517,3059:226276,3073:228050,3095
DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Rodney Reed's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Rodney Reed lists his favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Rodney Reed talks about his mother's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Rodney Reed describes his mother's upbringing

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Rodney Reed talks about his father's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Rodney Reed describes his father's career as a pharmacist

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Rodney Reed talks about his father's education

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Rodney Reed describes his parents' personalities and activities

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Rodney Reed lists his siblings

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Rodney Reed lists the places he lived in New Orleans, Louisiana

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Rodney Reed remembers Dooky Chase's Restaurant in New Orleans, Louisiana

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Rodney Reed describes the sights, sounds and smells of his childhood

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Rodney Reed recalls his early saxophone performances

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Rodney Reed describes his neighborhood in New Orleans, Louisiana

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Rodney Reed remembers Joseph A. Craig Elementary School in New Orleans, Louisiana

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Rodney Reed recalls his experiences at the Gilbert Academy in New Orleans, Louisiana

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Rodney Reed talks about his early aspirations

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Rodney Reed recalls his activities at the Gilbert Academy in New Orleans, Louisiana

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Rodney Reed describes his teenage personality

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Rodney Reed remembers matriculating at Clark College in Atlanta, Georgia

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Rodney Reed describes his experiences at Clark College

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Rodney Reed remembers the faculty and students at Clark College

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Rodney Reed talks about the music department at Clark College

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Rodney Reed remembers pledging to the Omega Psi Phi Fraternity

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Rodney Reed recalls enlisting in the U.S. Army

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Rodney Reed talks about his experiences in the U.S. Army

Tape: 3 Story: 10 - Rodney Reed recalls working as a busser at the University of Michigan student union

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Rodney Reed describes his experiences as a graduate student at the University of Michigan

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Rodney Reed remembers the popular music of the 1950s

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Rodney Reed recalls playing with the University of Michigan Marching Band, pt. 1

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Rodney Reed recalls playing with the University of Michigan Marching Band, pt. 2

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Rodney Reed remembers being hired at Southern University in Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Rodney Reed talks about the seclusion of Southern University in Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Rodney Reed describes the development of the Southern University Marching Band

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Rodney Reed remembers his career at Southern University

Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Rodney Reed talks about the student demonstrations at Southern University

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Rodney Reed describes his courtship with his wife

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Rodney Reed recalls becoming a teacher in the Oakland Unified School District

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Rodney Reed recalls his early career in the Oakland Unified School District

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Rodney Reed describes the formation of his dance band, the Ambassadors

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Rodney Reed describes his community in Oakland, California

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Rodney Reed recalls his decision to pursue a doctorate in education

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Rodney Reed recalls joining the faculty of the University of California, Berkeley Graduate School of Education

Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Rodney Reed describes his early career at the University of California, Berkeley

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Rodney Reed describes the findings of his doctoral dissertation

Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Rodney Reed talks about his mentors at the University of California, Berkeley Graduate School of Education

Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Rodney Reed remembers the support of Professor Troy Duster

Tape: 6 Story: 4 - Rodney Reed describes his work at the University of California, Berkeley

Tape: 6 Story: 5 - Rodney Reed recalls serving as faculty assistant to the chancellor at the University of California, Berkeley

Tape: 6 Story: 6 - Rodney Reed remembers the Loma Prieta earthquake

Tape: 6 Story: 7 - Rodney Reed remembers building a house in the San Francisco Bay Area

Tape: 6 Story: 8 - Rodney Reed recalls becoming the dean of the Pennsylvania State University College of Education

Tape: 6 Story: 9 - Rodney Reed recalls his transition to professor emeritus status at the University of California, Berkeley, pt. 1

Tape: 7 Story: 1 - Rodney Reed recalls his transition to professor emeritus status at the University of California, Berkeley, pt. 2

Tape: 7 Story: 2 - Rodney Reed talks about the Pennsylvania State University system

Tape: 7 Story: 3 - Rodney Reed describes his career at Pennsylvania State University in University Park, Pennsylvania

Tape: 7 Story: 4 - Rodney Reed talks about the end of his deanship at Pennsylvania State University

Tape: 7 Story: 5 - Rodney Reed recalls his commencement address at Pennsylvania State University

Tape: 7 Story: 6 - Rodney Reed describes his academic research

Tape: 7 Story: 7 - Rodney Reed talks about his research on educational finance in Africa

Tape: 7 Story: 8 - Rodney Reed talks about his friends from Liberia

Tape: 7 Story: 9 - Rodney Reed remembers his experiences at the University of Khartoum in Sudan

Tape: 7 Story: 10 - Rodney Reed talks about his international travels

Tape: 7 Story: 11 - Rodney Reed talks about his involvement in the Sigma Pi Phi Fraternity

Tape: 7 Story: 12 - Rodney Reed describes the Boule Scholars Program

Tape: 8 Story: 1 - Rodney Reed talks about the membership of the Boule

Tape: 8 Story: 2 - Rodney Reed reflects upon his life, pt. 1

Tape: 8 Story: 3 - Rodney Reed reflects upon his life, pt. 2

Tape: 8 Story: 4 - Rodney Reed describes his hopes and concerns for the African American community

Tape: 8 Story: 5 - Rodney Reed reflects upon his legacy

Tape: 8 Story: 6 - Rodney Reed talks about the Museum of the African Diaspora in San Francisco, California

Tape: 8 Story: 7 - Rodney Reed remembers his parents' support

Tape: 8 Story: 8 - Rodney Reed talks about his daughters and grandson

Tape: 8 Story: 9 - Rodney Reed describes how he would like to be remembered

Tape: 9 Story: 1 - Rodney Reed describes his television program, 'Touching the Future: Dialogues on Education'

Tape: 9 Story: 2 - Rodney Reed narrates his photographs, pt. 1

Tape: 9 Story: 3 - Rodney Reed narrates his photographs, pt. 2

DASession

1$1

DATape

4$6

DAStory

7$8

DATitle
Rodney Reed describes the development of the Southern University Marching Band
Rodney Reed recalls becoming the dean of the Pennsylvania State University College of Education
Transcript
What changes--what did you find and then what change did you institute with the Southern band [Southern University Marching Band]?$$Well first of all let me tell you about my position. It, it was to be the assistant director of the university bands and to teach the woodwinds and percussion instruments. So I taught clarinet and oboe and bassoon. I taught the percussion instruments, and then I was the band director. And in essence I was the band director in charge of the marching band. So what I found when I got there was a group that had been doing stuff. The band director, T. Leroy Davis who is an excellent musician, I have the utmost respect for, pushed them to, to read music, to get a good sound, to be disciplined and all that sorts. So all of that was in place, but my charge was to develop this band in a style of the Big Ten [Big Ten Conference] bands; that's what I took as a personal charge. So what did I have to do? I had to start with the basics and the basics are measuring your steps. We had to get--we had to create a practice field that had the same yard markers as a football, football field 'cause the way bands calculate what they do is so many steps per ten yards, or per five yards so we had to work on that. We had to work on steps, picking up your feet, being sharp, being in alignment, as well as on the musical side of stuff.$$Okay. So they weren't picking them up when you got there?$$No, no.$$Okay. They were just kind of walking sort of?$$Yeah, I mean just military style is you don't (gesture) do all this in the military--kind of military band. So, so, so we worked on all of these basic kinds of things and we practiced you know over and over and over. And then I wrote the scripts, I arranged some of the music that we played because to get the sound that the Big Ten bands get, they had special arrangements that projected those instruments that, that carried best on the, on the field. For example you can hardly hear a flute. If you're in a marching band playing a flute you can't hardly hear a flute, right? So at Michigan [University of Michigan Marching Band] they didn't use flutes. Saxophones carry much louder than flutes. So folks played clarinets and saxophones; they didn't play flutes and piccolos. The drums you know the drumbeats had to be very precise, but it also had to be designed in such a way that, that the drum itself physically didn't get in the way and all that. So some of them you know rolled out drums and all this kind of stuff you know timpani sets. So we worked on all of those kind of basics. It took a while because this was new. And I remember I had worked out a whole show with formations and you know we used diagrams and coordinate the music with the diagrams and the script. And I also was the announcer, so (laughter) I'd be up in the press box announcing: "And now ladies and gentlemen, with great pride we present the Southern University 100 Marching Band," or whatever the script called for. And then we expected them to (makes sound) to come out, right. And I remember the first show we did, it was at night, and I made this big announcement for them to come out and they came out and they got all mixed up (laughter), which, which showed that we hadn't practiced enough because it was at night, it was under the lights. It was in a, in a stadium that you know held about twenty thousand people maybe, there were probably about ten thousand people there. They got excited and they forgot all the stuff they were supposed to do, so it was like a big mess. I mean I, I, I mean I wanted to go home and cry but that was the last time that that happened because we made sure that we practiced enough that the stuff was ingrained that they could get up in the middle of the night and make the maneuvers and do all that sort of stuff. But it was, it was, it was great fun and we were able to accomplish it. We didn't do it the first year, or the second year. But by the third year, we sort of hit our stride. We were doing you know quite well.$All right, in 1990, now you make a--now you retire from University of California--$$No.$$--at--no?$$No.$$Okay, all right. Now (laughter) all right now what happened then? What happened?$$Okay. I had, you know while at Berkeley I mentioned that I'd had all these experiences. I was also head of our department in the school of education. At Berkeley it's called the school of edu- the Graduate School of Education [University of California, Berkeley Graduate School of Education, Berkeley, California], so I was department head. So I'd had this administrative experience working with the chancellor, in the school system, in the school of education. I also had you know several elected offices in professional associations. I was very active in a lot of different things. Here in our community with the Urban League [National Urban League] and the United Negro College Fund. I was head of the education unit for the Urban League and for the United Negro College Fund. I was a western region parliamentarian. I was with American Education Research Association [sic. American Educational Research Association], I was on their board. I was, I mean I was on you know lots of editorial boards and other kinds of stuff. Penn State [Pennsylvania State University, University Park, Pennsylvania] was looking for a dean and it was at--I didn't apply for the position there. It was at an American Education Research Association meeting that a group of faculty members, three faculty members from Penn State University's College of Education buttoned me off one day and said, "We'd like to have lunch with you." And we sat down for lunch and they said, "We're looking for a dean for our College of Education. We'd be very delighted if you would consider applying for the position." And I said, "Well I don't know," I mean Penn State, I mean I'd never heard of Penn State I mean to be honest with you. And I said, "Well let me think about it," and I did. And they contacted me again to see if I had made up my mind and then I said well you know what do I have to lose? This is something that, it's an administrative position. I've always been interested in administration and leadership positions, why not? So I put together my papers and I sent it to them and their search committee went through this whole process. And I flew up there to be interviewed a couple of times and met with the president [Graham Spanier] and some of the board members and on and on and on. I mean they put me through a--not a rigorous process but it was clear that it was a serious undertaking for them. I finally said yes. They made me an offer that was quite attractive and also appointed me as a--they didn't have endowed chairs in the College of Education, but they had something called the Pennsylvania Professor of Education, which was the nearest thing they had to an endowed chair. So they named me the Pennsylvania Professor of Education as well as the dean of the College of Education. I was the first senior academic black administrator at Penn State. There has not been one since I left.

George Lewis

Pioneering corporate executive George Ralph Lewis was born on March 7, 1941, in Burgess, Virginia, a small Chesapeake Bay fishing village. His mother, Edith Toulson Lewis, was a homemaker, and his father, Spencer Lewis, was very enterprising and held several jobs to support his family, including working on the docks, cooking and later, starting his own business renovating homes. Expected by his parents and community to go to college, Lewis enrolled at Hampton University in Hampton, Virginia. Following his first year of college, Lewis spent the summer working for his uncle, a Philadelphia restaurant owner. Delivering food downtown, Lewis overheard businessmen talking about their deals, and he decided to pursue a career in business. Returning to school that fall, Lewis changed his major to accounting and earned his B.S. degree in 1963. Later, in 1968, he earned his M.B.A. degree from Iona College in New Rochelle, New York.

Lewis’ first major job was with General Foods Corporation as a sales analyst for the Kool-Aid division in New York. In 1966, he moved to W.R. Grace, a specialty chemical company, where he worked as a financial analyst. In 1967, Philip Morris hired Lewis as a corporate analyst, and the next year, he became a senior planning analyst. He was promoted to Manager of Industrial Relations in 1970, Manager of Financial Services in 1972 and Assistant Treasurer in 1973. In 1975, Lewis became Treasurer and Vice President of Financial & Planning for Philip Morris Industrial, a subsidiary company. In 1982, he moved to Milwaukee, Wisconsin, where he worked for a different subsidiary, the Seven-Up Company, as Vice President of Finance. After two years, Lewis returned to the parent company, Philip Morris Companies, Inc., as Vice President and Treasurer. At that time, one of the highest-ranking blacks in finance, he was in charge of Philip Morris’ worldwide treasury activities. He oversaw the company’s takeover of General Foods in 1985 and of Kraft in 1988. In 1997, Lewis became President and CEO of Philip Morris Capital Company, the finance and investment subsidiary of Philip Morris. He retired from this position in 2001.

Lewis has received numerous awards for his pioneering business achievements. Both Iona College and Hampton University have recognized him, and in 2000, he received a CNN Trumpet Tower of Power Award. In 2006, the Jackie Robinson Foundation honored him with a lifetime achievement award. He has served on the boards of several large corporations and organizations, including the Professional Golfers’ Association of America, where he became the board’s first black member in 1995.

George Lewis was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on September 7, 2007.

Accession Number

A2007.247

Sex

Male

Interview Date

9/7/2007

Last Name

Lewis

Maker Category
Marital Status

Married

Middle Name

Ralph

Occupation
Schools

Hampton University

New York University

Iona College

Julius Rosenwald High School

First Name

George

Birth City, State, Country

Burgess

HM ID

LEW12

Favorite Season

None

State

Virginia

Favorite Vacation Destination

Dominican Republic, Rome

Favorite Quote

Stay Focused.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

New York

Birth Date

3/7/1941

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

New York

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Greens, Seafood

Short Description

Corporate executive George Lewis (1941 - ) was President and CEO of the Philip Morris Capital Company from 1997 to 2001.

Employment

General Foods Corporation

W.R. Grace & Co.

Philip Morris Incorporated

Philip Morris Industrial

7-Up Company

Philip Morris Capitol Corporation

MALCO, Inc.

Favorite Color

Blue

Timing Pairs
0,0:318,4:848,10:1590,18:18536,159:19319,171:21615,187:22040,193:33433,312:34927,348:36753,364:37583,376:38662,403:41180,408:44257,486:46074,501:49493,528:52981,586:62760,654:74124,836:81745,887:88808,949:99010,1202:105762,1241:106664,1256:107402,1267:107812,1273:109698,1324:110108,1330:112404,1426:112896,1433:127085,1645:129624,1666:132864,1694:133328,1699:134720,1749:143474,1830:170200,2030:173896,2191:174512,2206:178640,2253$0,0:476,13:21288,201:24760,218:25760,231:32399,343:32691,348:38850,399:41900,421:44600,469:144430,1399:161138,1570:161878,1582:174615,1683:175480,1693
DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of George Lewis' interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - George Lewis lists his favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - George Lewis describes his mother's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - George Lewis shares the history of Burgess, Virginia

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - George Lewis describes his mother's activities and interests

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - George Lewis talks about his mother and maternal grandmother

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - George Lewis describes his father's professions

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - George Lewis talks about his father's investments

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - George Lewis describes his father's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - George Lewis describes his father's personality

Tape: 1 Story: 11 - George Lewis describes how his parents met

Tape: 1 Story: 12 - George Lewis describes the community of Burgess, Virginia

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - George Lewis talks about segregation in Burgess, Virginia

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - George Lewis describes his earliest childhood memories

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - George Lewis describes his home life

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - George Lewis remembers the Shiloh Baptist Church in Reedville, Virginia

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - George Lewis describes his childhood home

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - George Lewis recalls celebrating the holidays with his family

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - George Lewis describes the sounds and smells of his childhood

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - George Lewis remembers his elementary school

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - George Lewis describes his experiences at Julius Rosenwald High School in Reedville, Virginia

Tape: 2 Story: 10 - George Lewis recalls his decision to attend the Hampton Institute in Hampton, Virginia

Tape: 2 Story: 11 - George Lewis remembers changing his major from medicine to accounting

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - George Lewis talks about his early business aspirations

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - George Lewis describes the impact of the Civil Rights Movement on Corporate America

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - George Lewis recalls being hired by the General Foods Corporation

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - George Lewis describes his experiences at the General Foods Corporation

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - George Lewis remembers earning an M.B.A. degree

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - George Lewis recalls meeting his wife

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - George Lewis talks about working for W.R. Grace and Company

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - George Lewis describes his career goals and responsibilities at W.R. Grace and Company

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - George Lewis recalls joining Philip Morris, Inc.

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - George Lewis talks about balancing his home life and career

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - George Lewis recalls his experiences at Philip Morris Inc.

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - George Lewis describes his promotion to assistant treasurer at Philip Morris, Inc.

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - George Lewis recalls his role as assistant treasurer of Philip Morris, Inc.

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - George Lewis talks about the reputation of Philip Morris Inc.

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - George Lewis talk about his career at Philip Morris, Inc.

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - George Lewis remembers learning to golf

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - George Lewis describes the country clubs in Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Tape: 4 Story: 9 - George Lewis recalls cofounding MALCO, Inc. with Wayne Embry

Tape: 4 Story: 10 - George Lewis recalls becoming the CFO of 7-Up in St. Louis, Missouri

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - George Lewis recalls becoming the treasurer of Philip Morris Inc.

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - George Lewis describes his colleagues at Philip Morris Inc.

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - George Lewis describes his responsibilities at Philip Morris Inc.

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - George Lewis recalls the racial discrimination at country clubs in New York City

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - George Lewis talks about the integration of New York City's country clubs

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - George Lewis recalls serving on the advisory board of the PGA of America

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - George Lewis talks about the role of golf in the business community

Tape: 5 Story: 8 - George Lewis recalls being promoted to CFO of the Philip Morris Capital Corporation

Tape: 5 Story: 9 - George Lewis describes the Philip Morris Capital Corporation

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - George Lewis talks about the anti-smoking campaign against Philip Morris USA

Tape: 6 Story: 2 - George Lewis describes Philip Morris Inc.'s international brands

Tape: 6 Story: 3 - George Lewis reflects upon his retirement

Tape: 6 Story: 4 - George Lewis describes his board memberships

Tape: 6 Story: 5 - George Lewis talks about his retirement activities

Tape: 6 Story: 6 - George Lewis talks about his daughter's marriage to Spike Lee

Tape: 6 Story: 7 - George Lewis describes his family

Tape: 6 Story: 8 - George Lewis remembers his co-recipients of the CNN Trumpet Tower of Power Award

Tape: 6 Story: 9 - George Lewis talks about his Lifetime Achievement Award from the Jackie Robinson Foundation

Tape: 6 Story: 10 - George Lewis reflects upon the position of African Americans in Corporate America

Tape: 7 Story: 1 - George Lewis talks about notable African American business executives

Tape: 7 Story: 2 - George Lewis reflects upon his legacy

Tape: 7 Story: 3 - George Lewis narrates his photographs

DASession

1$1

DATape

3$5

DAStory

3$1

DATitle
George Lewis recalls being hired by the General Foods Corporation
George Lewis recalls becoming the treasurer of Philip Morris Inc.
Transcript
You chose General Foods [General Foods Corporation]?$$Yeah, I, I got, as I said I got an interview at General Foods and--White Plains, New York and had, had a full day of interviews. My first interview was in the Jell-O division. I spent pretty much the full day there and I wasn't sure the interview had gone that well. I had thought that they were just going through the exercise because they were told that they had to interview some African Americans, but I, I wasn't quite sure that they were serious, and I didn't see, didn't see anybody that looked me during the interviewing process, and I happened to be sitting in the lobby of General Foods waiting for a cab going back to Philadelphia [Pennsylvania] because it was in the, going back to Hampton [Hampton Institute; Hampton University, Hampton, Virginia] quite frankly and this black woman walked through the lobby, and she said, "Who are you?" And I said, I told her who I was and she said, "But why are you here?" I told her I had gotten an interview with Jell-O and I didn't think it had gone that well, I just didn't think they were serious about it, I just thought someone had told them they had to interview African Americans. She said, "I'm manager of--," I forgot her title, she was manager of human resources at the corporate area. She was the only black person at General Foods at that time (simultaneous).$$(Simultaneous) Do you remember her name?$$Eileen Johnson [Eileen Williams Johnson], I will never forget her as long as I live and I've kept in contact. She died about five years ago, but I've kept in contact, I did keep in contact with her, and she said, "Sit here, we're gonna do something for you." So she came back, and she said, "I'm gonna have to give you a little test, a little quiz." So she gave me a test, you know different kinds of multiple choices, and little math problems and I did that and then she said, "I'm gonna have you interview the comptroller for the Kool-Aid division." Interviewed the comptroller he had me interview some others, went back to her and she said, "We're gonna get this done before you leave." So by the time I left there I had a job. If it had not been for that black woman, I would not have gotten the job at General Foods.$What are you asked to return to New York [New York] to do?$$It was a big job and I was, I was very, very surprised at the time when I got the call. It was to come back to New York as a corporate vice president to be, which is the first corporate vice president at Philip Morris Companies, Inc. [Philip Morris Inc.; Altria Group, Inc.], to be vice president and treasurer of Philip Morris Companies which at the time was from a profitability point, the seventh largest corporation in the world, and I was to be in charge of all world-wide treasury activities. You know we do business, we did businesses in every country you can imagine, so I had to manage currencies, I had to manage bank relations, I had to manage pension funds, I had to manage credits revolvers, big, big position. So when I got it, when I got the call, I called my partner in Milwaukee [Wisconsin], Wayne [HistoryMaker Wayne Embry], and I said, you know, I'm not sure this is gonna work, because I am, I have to take this. I said, "This is a first, there are no African American treasurers in the Fortune 100 and I don't think in the Fortune 500. It is an opportunity that I have got to do, so I'm gonna be going to New York and with MALCO [MALCO, Inc.], I'll give you as much time as I can, but I can tell you that certainly initially this job is going to consume just all my time," and he said, "No you gotta take it, you gotta do it, and you know if you can make some of the meetings, I'll just hold it down." Wayne is, Wayne is a super guy, he, we had a great relationship. So, so we came back to New York in 1984, came back as treasurer of Philip Morris, and it was fantastic. It was, it was, it was wonderful.

Dr. Hollis Underwood

Internal medicine physician Dr. Hollis Jonetta Crowe Underwood was born on October 29, 1957 in Chicago, Illinois to Robert Arthur and Janetta Martha Crowe. Underwood graduated from Cass Technical High School in Detroit, Michigan in 1975. She attended the University of Maryland as a zoology major. Underwood then completed her M.D. degree at Howard University School of Medicine and did her post graduate residency training at the Mayo Graduate School of Medicine in Rochester, Minnesota.

In 1987, Underwood worked in the National Health Service Corps at Frederiksted Health Center in St. Croix, Virgin Islands. While there, Underwood co-chaired the 1989 Peer Review Committee at the Virgin Islands Medical Institute in Christiansted, Virgin Islands. Underwood then began working as the Medical Director and Acting Project Director for Frederiksted Health Center and as the District Health Officer at the Charles Harwood Memorial Hospital in Christiansted until 1990.

In 1990, Underwood was hired as the Lead Internist and Director of Hypertension & Lipid Clinic at the Ohio Permanente Medical Group in Parma, Ohio, before working as an intermediate Lipid Specialist for the American Heart Association at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, Missouri. In 1994, Underwood became a consultant for the Department of Community Internal Medicine at the Mayo Clinic in Scottsdale, Arizona, where she worked until 2000.

In 1997, Underwood acted as a consultant on a sixteen member multi-disciplinary medical team that traveled to Dakar, Senegal to provide cardiovascular medical care for the community. The venture, Project MEDHELP, led by Albert F. Olivier, consisted of cardiothoracic and general surgeons, anesthesiologists, cardiologists, internists, public health experts, dermatologists and gynecologists.

In February 2000, Underwood became President of Sonoran Health Specialists, Inc., working alongside her husband Dr. Paul L. Underwood, Jr., in Scottsdale, Arizona. Underwood served on several boards and organizations including the Center for Women’s Health, Vibetree Foundation and Planned Parenthood. She is also active in several organizations including the Links, Inc., the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People and Jack and Jill of America, Inc.

Dr. Hollis Jonetta Crowe Underwood resides in Phoenix, Arizona with her family.

Dr. Hollis Jonetta Crowe Underwood was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on July 14, 2007.

Accession Number

A2007.208

Sex

Female

Interview Date

7/14/2007

Last Name

Underwood

Maker Category
Marital Status

Married

Middle Name

Holly

Schools

Cass Technical High School

University of Maryland

Howard University College of Medicine

Ernie Pyle Elementary School

Mayo Medical School

Lutheran Parish School

First Name

Hollis

Birth City, State, Country

Chicago

HM ID

UND02

Favorite Season

Fall

State

Illinois

Favorite Vacation Destination

Paris, France

Favorite Quote

If You Can't Be Who You Need To Be, By Remaining Who You Are.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Arizona

Birth Date

10/29/1957

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Phoenix

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Salad

Short Description

Internal medicine physician Dr. Hollis Underwood (1957 - ) specialized in internal medicine and was president of Sonoran Health Specialists, Inc. in Arizona.

Employment

Sonoran Health Specialists, Inc.

Mayo Clinic

Ohio Permanete Medical Group

Charlest Harwood Memorial Hospital

Frederiksted Health Center

Favorite Color

Chartreuse

Timing Pairs
0,0:4757,167:5695,187:8844,288:9849,303:10318,312:10586,322:11122,337:15209,441:16683,467:16951,472:17554,483:18358,499:18626,504:19229,515:30944,671:32388,725:32768,732:34516,766:35580,782:39684,876:45840,1008:51134,1047:51926,1075:54230,1121:56534,1184:57182,1194:57470,1199:58190,1210:62366,1307:65246,1376:65678,1394:66110,1402:82676,1628:83084,1636:87912,1781:88456,1790:88728,1795:89136,1802:89408,1807:94000,1829:95470,1861:95750,1866:96520,1883:97010,1891:98620,2002:99390,2021:100580,2047:100860,2052:104080,2118:104990,2132:108280,2197:108910,2207:112480,2280:113110,2290:115210,2341:132256,2698:138557,2794:139040,2802:139316,2807:140627,2840:142007,2865:143456,2901:145181,2929:145457,2934:161758,3276:162646,3290:162942,3299:163978,3310:168190,3354$0,0:6834,173:7303,184:7571,189:7839,194:8375,203:10720,263:11926,289:12529,299:13467,317:14070,327:14405,333:14807,340:15410,351:15946,361:17487,401:18425,428:19095,442:19497,453:20301,468:20569,473:20971,539:28110,601:29070,614:29390,619:29790,625:35150,702:35630,710:36030,716:37070,740:38670,835:38990,841:39310,847:44490,896:51240,1118:72390,1612:72730,1618:73580,1631:74345,1637:78972,1774:97944,2172:103346,2278:103638,2283:103930,2288:105901,2342:123366,2701:128334,2838:128694,2844:130926,2898:134980,2936
DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Dr. Hollis Underwood's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Dr. Hollis Underwood lists her favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Dr. Hollis Underwood describes her mother

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Dr. Hollis Underwood describes her father

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Dr. Hollis Underwood describes her earliest childhood memory

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Dr. Hollis Underwood describes her mother's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Dr. Hollis Underwood describes her maternal grandparents

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Dr. Hollis Underwood describes her paternal grandparents

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Dr. Hollis Underwood recalls living in Gary, Indiana and Detroit, Michigan

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Dr. Hollis Underwood lists her siblings

Tape: 1 Story: 11 - Dr. Hollis Underwood describes her neighbors in Gary, Indiana

Tape: 1 Story: 12 - Dr. Hollis Underwood describes the sights, sounds, and smells of her childhood

Tape: 1 Story: 13 - Dr. Hollis Underwood describes the socioeconomic climate of Gary, Indiana

Tape: 1 Story: 14 - Dr. Hollis Underwood describes Ernie Pyle Elementary School in Gary, Indiana

Tape: 1 Story: 15 - Dr. Hollis Underwood recalls living on St. Thomas in the U.S. Virgin Islands

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Dr. Hollis Underwood describes her community in the U.S. Virgin Islands

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Dr. Hollis Underwood remembers her father's death

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Dr. Hollis Underwood recalls moving to Detroit, Michigan

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Dr. Hollis Underwood describes her early aspirations to become a doctor

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Dr. Hollis Underwood describes her peers at Cass Technical High School in Detroit, Michigan

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Dr. Hollis Underwood remembers applying to college

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Dr. Hollis Underwood remembers the University of Maryland in College Park

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Dr. Hollis Underwood describes her professors at the University of Maryland

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Dr. Hollis Underwood describes her extracurricular activities

Tape: 2 Story: 10 - Dr. Hollis Underwood recalls the summer program at Meharry Medical College in Nashville, Tennessee

Tape: 2 Story: 11 - Dr. Hollis Underwood remembers Howard University College of Medicine

Tape: 2 Story: 12 - Dr. Hollis Underwood describes her mentor, Dr. John Townsend

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Dr. Hollis Underwood describes the Mayo Clinic School of Medicine in Rochester, Minnesota

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Dr. Hollis Underwood remembers treating her first patient

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Dr. Hollis Underwood remembers her experiences at the Mayo Clinic School of Medicine

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Dr. Hollis Underwood remembers dating her husband, Dr. Paul Underwood

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Dr. Hollis Underwood describes her fellowship at the Mayo Clinic School of Medicine

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Dr. Hollis Underwood recalls working at the Frederiksted Health Clinic in St. Croix

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Dr. Hollis Underwood remembers becoming a mother

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Dr. Hollis Underwood reflects upon her humanitarian medical work

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Dr. Hollis Underwood remembers moving to Cleveland, Ohio

Tape: 3 Story: 10 - Dr. Hollis Underwood talks about her community activism

DASession

1$1

DATape

2$3

DAStory

5$2

DATitle
Dr. Hollis Underwood describes her peers at Cass Technical High School in Detroit, Michigan
Dr. Hollis Underwood remembers treating her first patient
Transcript
So you go to Cass Tech [Cass Technical High School, Detroit, Michigan], now for the benefit of our viewers, Cass Tech is considered, was considered one of the elitist schools of Detroit, Michigan?$$Um-hm.$$So now you go to Cass Tech and what, what happens there for you?$$Well, you know, well the first thing is that, and this was a new concept for us, but, you're right, it was a magnet school, but you had to test to get in but there was, there were some of us who were invited to attend. And we were invited to attend and become a part of science and arts curriculum, which was an honors curriculum and, and not knowing Detroit, so we're relatively new there, but my mother's [Jonetta Everette Crowe] best friend who was like a second mother to me in many ways, just said, "Oh, absolutely, this is an opportunity you don't want, you know, not take advantage of," and, and that was it. You know, that was it and I, Cass was--it opened up even broader horizons, now you know we used to call it the pickle factory 'cause it looked like a pickle factory, you know, it was a pretty big old school, we had to all take the city bus to go to school. But I went to school with some kids that were just incredible people, some of whom are friends to this day, some of whom have done some amazing things in this world, made some tremendous footprints.$$Okay give us a few names of people that that, that we might want to know about.$$Oh wow. Well one is David Alan Grier, who is a very well-known actor, and he was a Cass Techite, you know, a Cass Techie, and Wanda [Wanda Whitten-Shurney], oh gosh, I'm blocking out her last name, she's a hematologist, her father [HistoryMaker Dr. Charles Whitten] was a, a very, very well-known hematologist in Detroit, did a lot of ground breaking research with sickle cell disease and she was a classmate, actually not only in high school, but also medical school [Howard University College of Medicine, Washington, D.C.], Harriet Covington [Harriet Covington-Smith], also a friend from medical school as well as high school, oh my gosh. And then, then you had the musicians who are amazing, Geri Allen, one of my classmates who is a very well-known established recording artist, straight ahead jazz pianist, J. Jones [ph.], a very accomplished saxophone player, I mean, so we, you know, we had all of the curriculums, then you had the perfor- the performing arts crowd and you know, and nobody gave any credence to the computer science club, but they're probably all, they've--$$(Laughter).$$--probably all became millionaires, up to the '90s [1990s], and we just lost track, I don't know (laughter).$$So--so Cass, they had a very fertile environment for you to grow, would you say (simultaneous)?$$(Simultaneous) Oh amazing. So, so much, I mean, you know, friends were attorneys and, and you know, the whole, you know the, the legacy, the Patti Coutiver [ph.], a very good friend of mine in high school, an attorney, her fam- her father was an educator, a very well established and well known educator. The former superintendent of schools [Cornelius L. Golightly], his daughter, Linnie Golightly [Linnie M. Golightly], was a classmate at Cass, so it was incredible and many of my friends wer- are physicians and, and, and attorneys and other careers that are considered leadership type careers as a result of that.$(Simultaneous) Do you recall your first assignment?$$Uh-huh. I was in community internal medicine, oh my goodness, ha, ha, with a gentleman who sadly, y- what I've come to realize is that some people's mediocrity prevents them from seeing the greatness in other people and they make it a conscious effort to put the squash on other people because of their own internal insecurity, and I saw a lot of that, I saw a lot of that, people hiding behind the shields of the Mayo Clinic [Mayo Clinic School of Medicine, Rochester, Minnesota] and with their own mediocrity. And I saw some things that really exposed what that whole experience was, was all about but, but I, I remember being nervous, a, a new intern, first rotation out of medical school [Howard University College of Medicine, Washington, D.C.] and a patient came in, he was very, very, very critically ill, we worked on him, you know, along with the, you know, the E- you know he came in through the ER [emergency room], I worked on him, did, you know, some things; read, worked, read, worked, you know, you had to really kind of move fast, got him kind of stabilized but you know, the, the attendings, consultants would always say, you know, call us, keep us posted, let us know what's going on. So maybe I called them at four o'clock and when I said, "I just wanted to let you know about the person came in and this is what happened and, you know, he's, he's doing better now." He said, "Well if he's still alive, call me in the morning," bam! Or, "We'll deal with it in the morning," and he hung up the phone on me, and I thought, okay so that, that, that was the first baptism by fire, and I realized, okay, so now I understand.$$So, so, so what did you do at that point when he did that to you?$$Oh, I--$$Were angered, or, or do you say, or what did you do?$$Oh, yeah (simultaneous)--$$(Simultaneous) 'Cause you--$$--it angers you.$$--had a patient.$$But it makes you strong. Let me tell you something, and, and this is what the old folks say, if it doesn't kill you, it'll make you strong. It made you strong. Every little hurt, every little slight, every little obstacle, every little pin that was pushed in my side intentionally, and mes- mostly intentionally, it just made me stronger. I'm, I, I'm, I made sure that there wasn't anything in medicine that I had not seen or knew about and I've, I've made that my philosophy. And I read, I read the PDR ['Physicians' Desk Reference'] and never forgetting once, I went to see somebody at his office, one of the consultants and I had the PDR and I was reading about something, he said, "What are you doing? Reading the PDR?" You know, he was kind of snickering, kind of in a very snide, and I said, you know, and I just laughed and said oh no. Yeah, I was reading the PDR, as a matter of fact, I was gonna read every aspect of that drug, at least what we knew about so I would be that much better informed so.

Xernona Clayton

Broadcast executive, foundation chief executive, nonprofit executive, television host, and television producer Xernona Clayton and her twin sister, Xenobia, were born August 30, 1930 in Muskogee, Oklahoma. Clayton’s parents, Reverend James M. and Lillie Brewster, were actively engaged in the Bureau of Indian Affairs in Muskogee. In 1952, Clayton earned her B.A. degree from Tennessee State Agricultural and Industrial College, now Tennessee State University. She later earned a scholarship and pursued graduate studies at the University of Chicago. In 1957, Clayton married noted journalist and civil rights activist Edward Clayton, who died in 1966. She later married jurist Paul L. Brady, the first African American appointed as a Federal Administrative Law judge.

Clayton's civic involvement and participation in the Civil Rights Movement was informed by the Chicago Urban League, in which she worked to investigate discrimination in employment. As an activist, Clayton was instrumental in coordinating activities for the Doctor's Committee for Implementation project, which culminated with the desegregation of hospital facilities in Atlanta, Georgia. Clayton also worked closely with Dr. and Mrs. Martin Luther King, Jr., helping to organize fundraising initiatives for the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC). By the mid-1960s, Clayton was writing for the Atlanta Voice, and in 1968, she became the first black woman in the South to host a regularly scheduled prime-time talk show, Variations, which became The Xernona Clayton Show on WAGA-TV in Atlanta. Her guests included Harry Belafonte and Lena Horne. Later that year, Clayton successfully convinced the Grand Dragon of the Ku Klux Klan to renounce the Klan. In 1982, Clayton began her long standing and impressive career with Turner Broadcasting System (TBS). At TBS, she assumed many roles throughout the years, including producing documentaries, hosting a public affairs program entitled Open Upand serving as director and vice-president of public affairs in the early 1980s. Ted Turner, founder of TBS, promoted Clayton to assistant corporate vice-president for urban affairs in 1988. In 1993, Clayton created the Trumpet Awards for Turner Broadcasting to honor African American achievements. The program is seen in over 185 countries.

As Governor of Georgia, former President Jimmy Carter appointed Clayton to the State Motion Picture and Television Commission. She is a member of the Academy for Television Arts and Sciences, the National Urban League, among other civic and professional organizations. Clayton is also a board member of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Center for Nonviolent Social Change and served as chairman of the Atlanta University Board of Trustees. The recipient of numerous accolades, Clayton received the Leadership and Dedication to Civil Rights Award and the Drum Major for Justice Award from SCLC in 2004. In her honor, the Atlanta Chapter of the Association of Black Journalists established the Xernona Clayton Scholarship. Clayton’s autobiography, I’ve Been Marching All the Time was published in 1991.

Xernona Clayton was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on June 22, 2005.

Accession Number

A2005.143

Sex

Female

Interview Date

6/22/2005 |and| 2/21/2014

Last Name

Clayton

Maker Category
Marital Status

Married

Schools

Dunbar Elementary School

University of Chicago

Manual Training High School

Tennessee State University

Search Occupation Category
First Name

Xernona

Birth City, State, Country

Muskogee

HM ID

CLA10

Favorite Season

Spring

State

Oklahoma

Favorite Vacation Destination

Las Vegas, Nevada, Bahamas, Caribbean

Favorite Quote

If You Can't Change People Around You, Change The People Around You.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Georgia

Birth Date

8/30/1930

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Atlanta

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Grapes

Short Description

Foundation chief executive, broadcast executive, and television host Xernona Clayton (1930 - ) was the founder of the Trumpet Awards, and the first black woman in the South to host a regularly scheduled prime-time talk show, Variations, which became The Xernona Clayton Show on WAGA-TV.

Employment

WAGA TV

Turner Broadcasting System, Inc.

Chicago Urban League

Favorite Color

Yellow

Timing Pairs
0,0:1428,20:4896,86:6460,124:7412,145:8772,198:9248,206:10404,240:11492,261:13532,295:20102,335:20772,347:25931,474:28611,524:29080,531:34373,662:34641,667:35311,684:37388,728:37656,733:38728,759:48161,859:52111,922:53770,956:54323,962:54718,968:57325,1016:62855,1137:72650,1279:72946,1284:78940,1445:79606,1457:84130,1471:88546,1561:89098,1574:108552,1934:109514,1953:110180,1964:113436,2019:114324,2033:116618,2077:116914,2082:121310,2106:121913,2120:132365,2350:133839,2380:135782,2417:137926,2491:140338,2520:149904,2596:150480,2603:151440,2615:153700,2631$0,0:810,26:1260,32:1980,42:3420,95:7248,145:8132,165:10924,193:14476,266:15734,290:16474,303:20026,368:21950,403:36902,541:37832,554:48126,694:48498,702:49490,720:49924,728:55776,809:57017,939:57309,944:58915,972:59426,982:63500,1020:65100,1047:70124,1128:75674,1304:76414,1316:85410,1475:87621,1542:88157,1555:96202,1666:104808,1765:105340,1773:105644,1778:105948,1783:107848,1819:108456,1828:116227,1938:127268,2065:132164,2129:135899,2207:143330,2325:143890,2337:147460,2416:148160,2433:148440,2438:150610,2509:151240,2519:151520,2524:155806,2554:156400,2564:156928,2576:157654,2591:157918,2596:162604,2731:163462,2752:163726,2757:167092,2849:167752,2862:176930,2963:181840,3002:185840,3092:186480,3101:190960,3188:200900,3290:201868,3303:206895,3482:207155,3487:207415,3492:208260,3507:209885,3543:210210,3549:213966,3600:215144,3638:215392,3643:216260,3667:216818,3678:217128,3690:217500,3699:221096,3787:224800,3817
DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Xernona Clayton's interview, session 1

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Xernona Clayton lists her favorites

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

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

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Xernona Clayton describes her childhood home

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Xernona Clayton talks about her mother's paternal background

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Xernona Clayton relates lessons from her father

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Xernona Clayton describes her father's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Xernona Clayton recounts how her parents met in Muskogee, Oklahoma

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Xernona Clayton recalls her father's leadership in the Baptist church

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Xernona Clayton remembers her father's work with the Bureau of Indian Affairs in Muskogee, Oklahoma

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Xernona Clayton recalls her father's humbling response to public praise of Clayton and her twin sister

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Xernona Clayton recalls growing up as an identical twin, pt. 1

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Xernona Clayton recalls growing up as an identical twin, pt. 2

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Xernona Clayton describes her earliest childhood memory

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Xernona Clayton describes the sights, sounds and smells of her childhood

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Xernona Clayton describes Dunbar Elementary School in Muskogee, Oklahoma

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Xernona Clayton recalls her favorite teachers and classes

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Slating of Xernona Clayton's interview, session 2

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Xernona Clayton talks about her educational foundation

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Xernona Clayton remembers Manual Training High School in Muskogee, Oklahoma

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Xernona Clayton talks about being a twin

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Xernona Clayton describes her father's role in Muskogee, Oklahoma

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Xernona Clayton describes her adolescent career aspirations

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Xernona Clayton recalls her decision to attend Tennessee Agricultural and Industrial State College

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Xernona Clayton recalls being named the smartest girl in her class at Manual Training High School

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Xernona Clayton recalls matriculating at Tennessee Agricultural and Industrial State College

Tape: 3 Story: 10 - Xernona Clayton considers how her childhood influenced her activism, pt. 1

Tape: 3 Story: 11 - Xernona Clayton considers how her childhood influenced her activism, pt. 2

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Xernona Clayton recalls her collegiate extracurricular activities, pt. 1

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Xernona Clayton recalls her collegiate extracurricular activities, pt. 2

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Xernona Clayton recalls being sheltered from discrimination during college

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Xernona Clayton recalls participating in a University of Wisconsin twin study

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Xernona Clayton recalls studying with her twin at Tennessee Agricultural and Industrial State College

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Xernona Clayton describes her approach to learning

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Xernona Clayton explains her decision to attend the University of Chicago

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Xernona Clayton reflects upon the impact of her father's lessons on humility

Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Xernona Clayton recalls how she became involved with the Chicago Urban League

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Xernona Clayton describes her initial work with the Chicago Urban League in Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Xernona Clayton talks about the Chicago Urban League's position on labor integration

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Xernona Clayton recalls chairing the most successful Chicago Urban League charity dinner

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Xernona Clayton remembers deciding to leave graduate school

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Xernona Clayton talks about meeting her husband, Edward Clayton

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Xernona Clayton recalls her involvement in Chicago's South Side society

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Xernona Clayton recalls teaching a prominent Chicago businessman to read and write

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Xernona Clayton reflects upon her legacy as an elementary school teacher in Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Xernona Clayton recalls meeting Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Xernona Clayton explains how she began working for Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

DASession

1$2

DATape

2$5

DAStory

3$1

DATitle
Xernona Clayton recalls growing up as an identical twin, pt. 1
Xernona Clayton describes her initial work with the Chicago Urban League in Chicago, Illinois
Transcript
But as a twin, now, people say it's--did you feel special--I guess you'd have to feel special as a twin, and did you have a special relationship with your twin [Xenobia Brewster]?$$Yes, we did feel special because when we found out we were rare and people made such notice of it--$$When did you first kind of realize it that something unusual was going on?$$Well, since we heard it every day, we started saying, "Mm-mm, you know, we're pretty special." But then we were so close. I mean, my sister and I, it's so like you have a best friend all the time. Everybody else has to go and try to find one and chose one. But I had one, and she had one, and we had each other. And it's somebody you really trust. I mean, you can tell your innermost secrets to your twin sister, and she could tell me hers. As a matter of fact, when we started courting, she'd tell me, like, she's going to slip out tonight when we had the curfew on and we couldn't get out after eight o'clock, and she had this hot date that she was determined to keep. And she says, "I'm going to slip out of the window"--we shared a bedroom; we slept together all the years. She said, "I'm going to slip out because my boyfriend's going to rap on the window, then I'm going out of the window, and then when I come back, I'm going to rap on the window, you let me back in and Mother [Lillie Elliott Brewster] will never know." And, of course, I didn't want her to do it, but that was my sister and my closest friend. And so, she was determined to slip out, that I was going to help her and support her, rather. And I was the one who really was always Miss Goody Two-Shoes. You know, I'd say, "Oh, no you can't break the rules. No, no, no." But she'd say, "Oh, yes, yes, yes." And so, since she was determined, I was going to support her because I didn't want her to get a whipping. And so, like we had those little secrets that nobody knew but us. But one night it backfired because my mother, having her own leveled wisdom, kind of figured something was going on I guess by the behavior pattern or body language. And so, that night when my sister slipped out and I was to assist her to slip back in when she rapped on the window, my mother opened the window (laughter). And she said, "Help me in," and the voice said, "Okay," and she thought it was my voice; it was my mother's voice. And when she came up, you know, she wanted to run back then; of course, it was too late then. Then when my mother gave her that little spanking, then I cried, too, because I didn't want her to, you know, to get spanked. But we shared everything, just everything.$We were talking about the Urban League of Chicago [Chicago Urban League]. And--$$Yes.$$--they needed--$$Well, discrimination was a reality, but they couldn't get a handle on it. So what they decided to do was, let's see if we can, you know, catch come--let do our homework to see if it's really being practice like what we think. So the pattern then was to, or the process was to look in the want ad sections and see who's hiring, what jobs are open, and then apply; apply meaning--now, this was in '52 [1952], and requirements or skills were not all that involved. Like, if you were a clerk, you could apply for a clerk/typist job if you could type and you could spell. And so you didn't have to have, you know, a medical degree to get a job. Now, my sister [Xenobia Brewster] and I had graduated from college [Tennessee Agricultural and Industrial State College; Tennessee State University, Nashville, Tennessee], so you assume we knew something. We could spell, read, and write, and we could type, and, and we learned how to type in, in college. And I don't know if you remember a man name Cortez Peters, who was the fastest man in, in America.$$Right, Cortez Typing School [sic. Cortez W. Peters Business School].$$Yeah, he was a typist. And we had a chance to meet him. And he came to our college one year, and I got a chance to meet, and boy, I was so fascinated by him. And I said one of these days I'm gonna type like Cortez Peters. And I learned to be a pretty good typist, you know, of course nowadays it doesn't matter much. But I learned how to be a good typist, and so was my sister. So we were both good typists. And so the Urban League said well, let's do this: you be our front men. And we'll always like, position five minutes, ten minutes away from where we'd call. So we called, say Marshall Field's [Marshall Field & Company]. There would be an ad in the paper for a clerk typist. And we'd call and said, "I see you have an ad in the paper." "Yes." "Is the job still open?" "Yes." "It's okay to apply?" "Yes." Then we'd make a beeline over there, like ten minutes away. And we'd get there and, "We're here to apply. I understand you got a clerk/typist at"--we don't tell we're the ones that called. You said, "I came to apply for your clerk/typist job." "Oh, so sorry, but we just filled that." You know, (laughter), well, then you got them right there. Well, that happened with so many companies, Spiegel [Spiegel Inc.]--well, I don't wanna name all of the companies that were kind of guilty but major companies that looked like they were good guys. You know, Marshall Field's, everybody went to Marshall Field's. It was a joy to go to Marshall Field's. They looked like good guys. Spiegel was a good mail order place and oh, a lot of places. And my sister and I went to many of those places that did the same pattern, apply--I mean broadcast the--advertise an opening, and then when you got there, you're black, it's not for you. And we broke down a lot of that. And it was kind of, you know, fun job; job meaning, you know, it was assigned tasks. They were really very--and I was waiting for school to start anyways, then the summer, so it was before we went to col- before I went to school.$$So, so would the Urban League then confront the business in, in a (simultaneous)--$$(Simultaneous) And they would--$$--formal setting--$$Oh yeah, and then they, they would document it.$$(Unclear)--$$And so they put, I mean had very good documentation, which means--and then they called a press conference. And of course, then you embarrass the company. And then the, you know, the good guys say well, we gotta change our image. You know, we can't be out here looking this bad. So that's how the integration took place, is all I think just felt embarrassed.$$

Dr. Warren Strudwick, Sr.

Dr. Warren James Strudwick was born on December 23, 1923, in Durham, North Carolina. His mother was a teacher and his father a physician. As a child, he enjoyed a privileged life until his father’s death in 1931, when he was eight years old. Strudwick attended Whitted Elementary School and as a young boy enjoyed building model airplanes and was a member of the safety patrol. He received his diploma from Hillside High School in 1940.

Strudwick attended North Carolina College for Negroes in 1940, where he studied chemistry until he transferred to West Virginia State College in 1942. That same year, he was drafted into the United States Marine Corps where he served in a combat unit during World War II. In 1943, he attended Purdue University to complete Officers Training School. In 1946, Strudwick entered Howard University, receiving his B.S. degree in biology and chemistry in 1948. He went on to attend Howard University Medical School and while a student met and married his wife, Dr. Bette Catoe. He graduated from medical school in 1952.

In 1958, Strudwick helped to integrate Washington, D.C. hospitals. From 1961 to 2000, he taught surgery at Howard University Medical School. While teaching, he also operated a successful private practice in Washington, D.C. Strudwick was a member of numerous professional organizations including the American Board of Surgery, the American Medical Association, the American Cancer Society and the American Society of Abdominal Surgeons. He was also actively involved in the NAACP, Urban League and Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity. Strudwick also wrote and published a number of medical related articles.

Strudwick passed away on October 27, 2008 at the age of 84. He leaves behind his wife and three grown children; two are physicians and the other an attorney.

Accession Number

A2004.084

Sex

Male

Interview Date

6/17/2004

Last Name

Strudwick

Maker Category
Marital Status

Married

Middle Name

James

Occupation
Schools

W. G. Pearson S.T.E.A.M. Elementary School

Whitted Elementary School

Hillside High School

North Carolina Central University

West Virginia State University

Purdue University

First Name

Warren

Birth City, State, Country

Durham

HM ID

STR05

Favorite Season

Spring

State

North Carolina

Favorite Vacation Destination

Caribbean

Favorite Quote

None

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

District of Columbia

Birth Date

12/23/1923

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Washington

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Fried Chicken

Death Date

10/27/2008

Short Description

Surgeon Dr. Warren Strudwick, Sr. (1923 - 2008 ) helped to integrate Washington, D.C. hospitals and has taught at Howard University Medical School. Strudwick also had a successful private practice in Washington.

Employment

Post Office, Washington DC

Howard University

Favorite Color

Blue

Timing Pairs
0,0:792,29:1980,48:2508,57:2970,66:3432,72:3894,81:4422,93:5082,106:6138,133:13155,236:13581,244:13865,250:14504,265:14788,270:15285,279:15924,293:16421,302:16705,307:22598,433:26626,438:28562,468:28914,473:33402,543:37358,569:38006,581:43669,657:44317,668:44722,674:45370,700:47756,709:49068,726:49806,738:50708,750:51036,755:51774,767:52102,772:54234,809:54808,819:58908,936:67772,1025:70390,1086:70852,1093:72546,1121:81487,1221:90360,1317:90871,1326:91236,1332:92404,1355:96054,1422:96565,1431:96930,1437:97222,1443:97733,1451:102786,1484:103216,1491:103990,1504:107906,1537:110780,1547:111185,1553:112319,1570:112724,1576:114425,1625:114992,1634:115397,1640:116288,1654:120480,1687:121080,1699:122180,1721:124280,1748:127064,1759:127652,1768:129248,1790:130004,1815:130424,1821:136052,1944:136724,1953:149027,2122:153631,2185:154461,2198:155042,2207:155457,2214:156951,2241:157283,2246:158528,2266:159358,2293:159690,2298:161267,2338:165411,2357:166421,2369:167633,2389:169148,2413:169956,2423:176196,2449:176840,2457:181128,2516:190896,2633:191192,2638:192524,2675:192820,2680:193116,2692:193634,2701:194004,2729:203840,2848:204236,2856:205028,2872:205622,2890:208896,2940:209344,2957:209984,2998:210368,3012:212896,3042:214700,3056:216287,3090:217430,3096:219900,3104:222385,3166:224570,3205:224930,3212:225290,3220:229536,3304:236531,3383:238313,3415:239204,3438:241900,3446:242077,3457$0,0:1472,42:1856,50:2560,70:3136,87:3520,94:3968,102:4416,112:4864,120:17796,171:20984,192:25378,254:25952,262:27250,282:30450,338:31410,357:31810,363:43415,571:44520,587:51277,613:51625,618:52582,630:53887,648:62034,738:62658,747:66636,847:68118,874:68664,886:74436,1009:75138,1019:75450,1024:82944,1113:83592,1123:87768,1208:94028,1283:94288,1289:94548,1296:97530,1346:102668,1421:105776,1477:106112,1482:115616,1650:116694,1674:124986,1822:126278,1865:126754,1873:128794,1922:130562,1988:131242,1999:131718,2007:132262,2025:132534,2030:132806,2036:133146,2042:134302,2065:134778,2073:142533,2152:142857,2157:143343,2164:143667,2169:147260,2188:156890,2339:157690,2353:158090,2359:161599,2419:161915,2424:164917,2502:165391,2510:168156,2580:169657,2615:170289,2625:171237,2639:178260,2675:178700,2680:179580,2691:181010,2704:181450,2709:188006,2787:188314,2792:191110,2815:196380,2883:197920,2935:200720,3024:201350,3034:210170,3115:211500,3133:216095,3198
DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Warren Strudwick interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Warren Strudwick lists his favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Warren Strudwick remembers his mother

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Warren Strudwick remembers his father

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Warren Strudwick traces his family history

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Warren Strudwick shares his earliest memories

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Warren Strudwick recalls the sights and smells of growing up

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Warren Strudwick discusses his brother

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Warren Strudwick gives an overview of his school life

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Warren Strudwick describes his childhood interests

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Warren Strudwick discusses his early religious participation

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Warren Strudwick recalls influential figures from his adolescent years

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Warren Strudwick recounts his high school experience

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Warren Strudwick details his college experience and his military stint

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Warren Strudwick recounts his medical school experience

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Warren Strudwick discusses changes in his family life

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Warren Strudwick reflects on his medical training

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Warren Strudwick reflects on the medical profession during the 1950s

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Warren Strudwick describes his experiences as a medical school professor

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Warren Strudwick evaluates the "managed care" healthcare system

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Warren Strudwick considers the effect of violent crimes on healthcare systems

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Warren Strudwick describes his family's medical legacy

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Warren Strudwick shares advice for aspiring medical practitioners

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Warren Strudwick reflects on developments in the medical field during his lifetime

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Warren Strudwick describes how he'd like to be remembered

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Warren Strudwick shares thoughts on the significance of history

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Warren Strudwick reflects on his father's success

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Warren Strudwick considers his legacy

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Warren Strudwick reflects on systems of government

DASession

1$1

DATape

1$2

DAStory

4$6

DATitle
Warren Strudwick remembers his father
Warren Strudwick recounts his medical school experience
Transcript
Now, let's talk a little bit about your father, starting with his name, where he grew up and where he was born?$$Okay. His name was William Canady Strudwick. Now, where he got both names, I do not know. The William and the Canady, I have no idea, except for the fact that the name William, when you look through the Strudwicks on the computer, you see a lot of Williams, and it may be they just picked that up. Canady, I have no idea about. Strudwick, I think it came from the plantation owners, I suppose. I don't think Strudwick is an African name, as such, so this is the only way that I can say it came about. He, as far as I knew--my daddy died when I was eight years old [1932]. I have very few recollections of what he was like. I do know that he was very good to me and certainly, I remember that very well. He was a disciplinarian and my mama [Mabel Christina Wormley] used to say, well, I'll tell your daddy when he comes home what you did, you know. And I was scared, but anyway, he was not the one who would give me the whipping. I had to go outside and get the switch from the hedges and my mama would do the whipping (laughter) for whatever I had done wrong, you know (laughter). But anyway, I remember he was flamboyant and an immaculate dresser. I don't remember ever seeing my daddy in what one would call work clothes. He always had on a suit and tie and cuff links and all, and he--and I guess in those days, doctors were that way. They, and that's what I remember. I remember he liked cards too. We were in a black neighborhood, in which everybody, you were either poor, middle class or what one would call well-off black, you know. And so we were well off as blacks go in that--in fact, we had two cars as I remember. Prior to that time, I was told that he used to make his house calls in a wagon, you know, horse and wagon. We had a barn behind our house. I can remember that, the little barn, and I remember that barn. But I don't remember the horse and the buggy. I do remember the cars that we had. We had a Packard, which was a super car. I guess it was the Mercedes of that day. And we had a Hupmobile, which was a two-seater car, which in the back was like a convertible, you know, the back seat was, you could open, and you'd sit in the back seat in the air and all. So I remember that about him. I remember he used to carry me at times to East Durham to visit his patients, and he had some friends down there who we'd go to see. The man who married him, I remember him as Reverend Sowell and his wife. They had a store in East Durham. I can remember very well the, going down there in these cars and all. And at that time, there were not paved roads. They had dirt roads, and all, and I remember, you know, sometimes it was muddy and all. But he would take me with him and all. And this is about all I can remember about my father. I remember it was very devastating to my mother and to my brother [William Wormley Strudwick], you know, when my father died. But being eight years old, it just did not translate to me very well, until I started not being able--my mother would tell me that we can't afford this and we can't afford that. That's when it started to hit me. But from that point on, from eight, through nine to ten and all that, took it, but anyway, there were some things that I wanted. So I started working at ten years of age. I started finding little jobs to make money.$What were our experiences like in medical school, like were there any classes that you really enjoyed taking in medical school?$$Yeah, I guess, you know, to me all of 'em were enjoyable if it were not for who--sometimes who was teaching and all, but the subject itself, I mean, was quite interesting, you know. You were learning all the time. You learned about bacteria, you learned about the germs, and you learned--they called it bacteriology. You learned about anatomy, you learned the anatomy of the body. You learned what is biochemistry, you know, the chemical elements of the body. You--it was just a very interesting experience for me anyway. And you did not--what you were trying to do is get the basics before you went to clinical medicine, and everybody strived to get to clinical medicine when you start treating, taking care of patients. But anyway, and early, I, I enjoyed it.$$So while you were in medical school, did you know that you wanted to be a surgeon or were you still trying to determine what type of medicine you would go into?$$No, I wanted to be a surgeon, yeah. I wanted to do something with my hands. I always wanted to do something--that's why I said I wanted to be an engineer and all. I wanted to be something, you know. So surgery was the thing that I would be doing with my hands and all. And it was fascinating to me. Surgery was fascinating, and I wanted to be able to do something to a person that would make them better. And most things in surgery, you were operating to make a person better. In medicine, there were some things that--and most things with surgery, you could cure, if you're gonna operate on 'em. But in medicine, you weren't--you could treat them, but you knew they were gonna die no matter what you did (chuckle). So surgery was my choice as far as that was concerned.$$And while you were in medical school, you--as you mentioned, while you were at Howard [University] you met your wife [Bette Catoe]. And you all married in medical school. What was that like, being married while going to medical school?$$It was okay. And the reason it was okay, and I think that one of the best things that happened to me was maybe going into the service. I grew up in the service. It made me know that I, when I got out, I had to do something, and it gave me the GI Bill of Rights, and I don't think, if I had not had the GI Bill of Rights, I would have been able to afford to go to medical school or to finish college. I don't know, I have no idea, but I do know the GI Bill of Rights took me all the way through except for my last year of medical school in which I got a scholarship for that. But up until that point, you know, the GI took care of us. I worked part time. I worked--part of the time, I worked at the post office, you know, just about the whole time I was in medical school really. And you can't work now. They do not allow you to work. It's too much to learn. They don't allow you to work now. If you're gonna work, you can work at something related to medicine. So it's a little different in this day. I know some of my classmates worked full time, you know, doing something, during medical school days.

Leah "Dooky" Chase

Leah Chase, "the Queen of Creole Cuisine," was born January 6, 1923, in New Orleans, Louisiana, of Catholic Creole parents. She was sent to New Orleans in 1937 to live with her aunt and to attend St. Mary's Academy for high school. Her first job out of school was at the Oriental Laundry in the French Quarter. A week later, Chase was hired by the Colonial Restaurant on Chartres Street. She has been in the restaurant industry ever since.

In 1945, she met and married musician Edgar "Dooky" Chase II, whose parents owned the Dooky Chase Restaurant. At first, Chase spent her time raising her children and sewing, but once the children were old enough to attend school she began to work at the restaurant three days a week. She changed the menu to serve hot meals at lunchtime to black men who were beginning to work in offices. She started out as a hostess, but she was soon redecorating the restaurant and working as chef. Because of Chase, the Dooky Chase Restaurant is known for its good food, antiques and original African American art.

Chase has received many awards both for her culinary genius and her community service including: the coveted New Orleans Times Picayune 1997 Loving Cup Award, the Weiss Award from the National Conference of Christians and Jews, the Torch of Liberty Award, the University of New Orleans Entrepreneurship Award, the Outstanding Woman Award from the National Council of Negro Women, and numerous honors from the NAACP. She serves on many organizational boards including the Arts Council of New Orleans, the New Orleans Museum of Art and the Urban League. Chase is a frequent guest on many of the televised cooking shows and was visiting culinary professor at Nichols State University in 1996. She has four children, sixteen grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.

Chase passed away on June 1, 2019.

Accession Number

A2002.199

Sex

Female

Interview Date

11/15/2002

Last Name

Chase

Maker Category
Marital Status

Married

Occupation
Schools

A Whizz Kids Preschool Inc Ii

St. Mary Academy

St. Francis Xavier

First Name

Leah

Birth City, State, Country

New Orleans

HM ID

CHA03

Favorite Season

None

State

Louisiana

Favorite Vacation Destination

Fort Wayne, Indiana

Favorite Quote

Whatever You're Going to Do, You Better Do it and Enjoy Life.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Louisiana

Birth Date

1/6/1923

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

New Orleans

Country

United States

Favorite Food

All Food

Death Date

6/1/2019

Short Description

Chef and restaurateur Leah "Dooky" Chase (1923 - ) is famous for her Creole-style cooking, and was proprietor of the Dooky Chase Restaurant in New Orleans.

Employment

Colonial Restaurant

Dooky Chase Restaurant

Favorite Color

Green

Timing Pairs
0,0:6708,118:15870,191:23082,294:24784,334:35460,451:57368,666:57664,671:69504,883:80936,982:84096,1049:86071,1087:86387,1092:87730,1119:89073,1154:97185,1228:104611,1386:105322,1396:114802,1638:120520,1655:121920,1701:133594,1820:134540,1838:145614,1979:146356,1989:148680,1998$0,0:8568,107:8988,113:10920,132:20916,314:81669,987:107232,1406:134762,1780:135576,1800:136538,1821:170184,2289:172996,2460:181562,2553:213901,2986:228170,3146:235892,3266:241588,3314:252182,3482:268964,3707:294252,4004:308857,4198:332440,4516
DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Leah Chase's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Leah Chase lists her favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Leah Chase talks about her family's history

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Leah Chase talks about her ancestry

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Leah Chase describes her Creole ancestry and the contributions of Creoles

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Leah Chase talks about Patois

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Leah Chase describes her father, Charles Lange

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Leah Chase talks about her family

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Leah Chase describes how her parents met

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Leah Chase describes her mother, Hortensia Lange

Tape: 1 Story: 11 - Leah Chase describes the sights, smells, and sounds of her childhood

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Leah Chase talks about her parents' value for education

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Leah Chase talks about her Catholic education

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Leah Chase describes her role models

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Leah Chase describes her childhood personality

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Leah Chase talks about her first jobs after high school

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Leah Chase talks about her husband Dooky Chase and the Sandwich Shop

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Leah Chase describes implementing changes at Dooky Chase's Restaurant, pt.1

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Leah Chase describes implementing changes at Dooky Chase's Restaurant, pt.2

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Leah Chase describes her relationship with her mother-in-law, Emily Chase

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Leah Chase talks about her battle to add art to Dooky Chase's Restaurant

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Leah Chase talks about featuring the art of Jacob Lawrence, Jonathan T. Biggers, Clifton Webb, Lois Mailou Jones, and HistoryMakers Elizabeth Catlett, Jonathan Green, David Driskell, William Pajaud

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Leah Chase describes her food and the chef community in New Orleans

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Leah Chase talks about New Orleans chef Austin Leslie and managing restaurants

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Leah Chase talks about popular menu items and the hours of operation at Dooky Chase's Restaurant

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Leah Chase talks about Dooky Chase's Restaurant as a meeting place for civil rights organizations SNCC and COFO and activists like Oretha Castle Haley, James Baldwin, and Thurgood Marshall

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Leah Chase talks about Dutch Morial, the first black mayor of New Orleans

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Leah Chase describes her hopes and concerns for the black community

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Leah Chase talks about her honors including the NAACP A.P. Tureaud Medal, the Loving Cup, and the Ella Brennan Savoir Faire Award

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Leah Chase reflects upon her family's support and how they view her success

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Leah Chase reflects upon her legacy

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Leah Chase talks about how she would like to be remembered

DASession

1$1

DATape

3$3

DAStory

4$7

DATitle
Leah Chase describes her food and the chef community in New Orleans
Leah Chase talks about Dooky Chase's Restaurant as a meeting place for civil rights organizations SNCC and CORE and activists like Oretha Castle Haley, James Baldwin, and Thurgood Marshall
Transcript
Can you tell me about the food, and what makes the food here so special?$$Well because, because I do most of the food myself. I love it, and I love to--I live and breathe food. I, I like to work with food, and I learned one thing--that you cook what you're all about; I could make any kind of cream sauce you want, any kinda--but is that me? People don't come here for that; they come here for me, for what my culture's all about, like stewed okra, string beans, gumbos, beans and rice if you will, or shrimp creole--that kind of thing; they don't look for all the other trendy things, they come here to get a good meal and a good--and when they tell you, "That's just like my grandma," I love it because I know I've done well; if I can cook as good as your grandmother, I have done well. So I try to do that all the time, and you stretch out and do different things at different times, and try different things, but basically, you stay with what you are, and that's, and that's what it's all about. The people in New Orleans [Louisiana], other restaurant owners in New Orleans have been good to me, and that's one thing you will find in New Orleans that you may not find anywhere else--that chefs kinda work together; they work with you, they--if you ask them--I mean if you go to Emeril [Lagasse]'s and you say, "Well, where can I get this?" He'll say, "Well, you go to Leah for that," or I'll tell you, "You go to Paul Prudhomme for that." Like people come here, "Can you blacken me some fish?" "No. I'm not blackenin' anything; I'm the only black thing in my kitchen, I'm not doin' any blackened fish; that's not what I'm all about; Paul does that, that's his thing, you go to Paul to get that." And that--and that's what you do. And people have been real--the chefs have been extraordinary to me; really, really good to me because I'm not certified, I'm not formally trained like they are, but they include me in everything, and we work together, and I learn from them, and it's fun.$Yeah, okay. And this place has another significance in addition to the food and the ambience; it's been a place where black people have met to plan and develop (simultaneous)--$$(Simultaneous)--Well, because you see--as I said, we've been here 60--what--62, almost 63 years, and it was one place where people met even in segregation days when it was really illegal for blacks and white to congregate in public together anywhere; that was truly illegal. Well, here, if the politicians had to meet black people, this is where they had to meet 'em unless they would go in somebody's church, but this is where they had to meet them here. A lotta things--people come here and get things started and have meetings and go on because it was--and it still is, they still do that; they still come here. If they wanna meet with people, they come and meet over lunch or dinner or somethin' like that.$$Yeah, we heard a couple of days ago that SNCC used to meet here, and CORE was formed here, I think. CORE was formed right here at Dooky Chase.$$Mm-hmm, mm-hmm, because we had a woman workin' for us--Virgie [Castle], and Virgie was from Tennessee, but her daughter was big in the Civil Rights Movement; they have a street named after her--Oretha Castle Haley, and Oretha was big in the civil rights movement, and Virgie was an exceptional woman; why I say that, because Virgie--Virgie wasn't like me--she wasn't like a Leah, you know, she was supportive of what they were doin'; she didn't understand it, like none of us understood what the heck they're doin'; they in the streets, they paradin' in the streets, they, they sitting down, they're bein' dragged off to jail--you kinda didn't understand why, or you didn't understand was it worth this. But Virgie was always supportive of that, and she lived around the corner; I think they tryin' to make her house a historic space, and they should because everybody was there--James Baldwin--they would go there and then come here to eat. Everybody either slept at Virgie's house--I know took a bath there 'cause when they'd come outta jail I'd say, "Ayyy, go to Virgie's; go take a bath and come back here" (laughter). "You mean you gonna put me out?" I say, "Go take a bath at Virgie's and come back here, and I'll feed you" (laughter). So that was then. But she was very supportive of what her children were doing. As I said, she maybe didn't--she didn't understand, but she wasn't anti-anything, and it was hard for her because police were all around her house all the time; it was just hard, it was really hard for her.$$This is Virgie--what's her last name?$$Castle.$$Castle--Virgie Castle.$$Mm-hmm (ph.). And her daughter was Oretha Castle$$Could you spell that?$$Oretha, O-R-E-T-H-A.$$And Virgie?$$V-I-R-G-I-E.$$And Castle?$$C-A-S-T-L-E. And Oretha married a man name--[Richard] Haley was his last name. What was his first name? I, I just don't remember, but he was another bright man, really brilliant man, and did a lot of work, and was very supportive of his wife in her civil rights actions and what she did. And you know, we used to be--like Thurgood Marshall would come through here and he was workin' with the NAACP; in my age, that's what people were doing; we gonna work in the system, we gonna work this way with the NA--but you realize that that was so slow; we would still be today tryin' to get it done. Sometimes you have to take drastic moves, just go at it, and that's what those young people did--they just took those drastic moves and run it. Sometimes it was wrong moves, but that's okay; you, you had to get it done in some ways, and they were able to get it done--that we would've not been able to get it done workin' the slow system we were workin' at, you know? It was not--you know, they were not gonna--we were not gonna make anybody understand where we were coming from. Now, I think we could go a different route; I think the job of the NAACP now--I think it's a pity we still need it; it's just a pity that we still need the NAACP, Urban League and all those kinds of organizations. But now, it should be an educational thing--teach people how to vote, how to vote for the right people, how to vote not necessarily for your friend, but for the man who's gonna move everything a step higher, for the man who's gonna move the country, for the man who's gonna move your city and involve you and involve everybody, and that, that's their job today. I think it should be a lot on education and how we ought to go about thing.