Pioneers in education, professions, business
Reporter contributor

Editor’s note: The fifth edition of Susie Sansom Piper’s Black History Month series “On The Other Side of the Tracks” looks back at notable African- American women in Rockdale’s history.

The year 1954 w ill always remain on the pages of history, for it was one of the first introductions to the integration of schools, especially in the southern United States.

Topeka, Kansas was the site of the cour t case which went down in history as Brown vs Board of Education.

Arguments, confrontations, bloodshed continued, but the end results produced the Civil Rights Acts of 1964 under the leadership of President Lyndon B. Johnson.

In compliance with the law of the land, schools in this vicinity began integrating in 1964- 65, with final merging occurring in 1967-68.

This article focuses on the success of some of the young ladies who graduated from the Rockdale public schools since integration.

During the beginning years of integration, these were the first instructors who played an intein gral part of early integration:

Laura E. Petty, high school science; Mildred W. Lovelady, music; Lucy B. Battle, first grade; Flora J. Mack, sixth grade English.

Frankie M. McDonald and Ardie M. Williams, special education; Susie Sansom Piper, juniorhigh subjects.

Annie R. Ellison, minister and speech teacher in West Columbia; Darlene Douglas, computer technologist, trouble shooter with Texas Department of Human Resources; Janice Marie Dougla s, eng ineer ing document designer in Houston.

Lynn Locklin Whiteside, licensed beautician, teacher

Rockdale ISD; Barbara A. Wesley Grayson, first black on Rockdale ISD School Board, loan officer, Rockdale Federal Credit Union.

Angela White, former coach, current counselor, Rockdale Junior High School; Theresa White, basketball coach, Houston ISD; Wanda White, Teachercoach, Cameron ISD.

Carolyn Quigley Cooper, director, Rockdale Senior Citizens Center; Elizabeth Galloway McQuitter, former professional basketball player, current basketball coach, Rockdale High School.

Deborah Boney Gadison, teacher of adult education/ literacy, Houston; Peggy R. Boney Culberson, clinical psychologist, computer science and health care works.

Lisa Walton-Benford, former bank vice-president, founder of Lisa’s Hope Chest, restorer of Bessie’s Cottage, responsible for many new housing projects “on the other side of the tracks.”

Avis Jackson Norwood, LVN in Temple; Etta J. Pollard Brown, culinary arts expert, former food service specialist with National Guard; Kimberly Tindle Williams, former investigator for Child Protective Services in child placement.

Vanessa Pollard Roberson, certified in office skill, Seattle Postal Services; Lovie Pollard, IRS human resource clerk; Felicia Harris Wesley and Melanie Harris McBride, teachers in Round Rock ISD.

Yolanda Phillips, licensed beautician, Temple; Angela Phillips, supervisor (25 years), Texas Criminal Justice System, Austin; LaShun Phillips, specialist (20 years), Texas Cr imina l Justice System, Austin; Tamara S. Norris-Powell, IRS analyst MA, acupuncture and oriental medicine, Austin; Barbra Clark Kelley, media para-professional with Farmers Branch ISD.

Tommie J. Cashaw-Austin, (PhD), nursing education supervisor of 2,500 nurses under auspices of five hospitals of Baptist Health System, San Antonio; Myrtle Washington Brown, operator of day care center, Hutto.

Sandra Lewis Brown, Helen Phillipps, the late Tanya Baggerly, registered nurses, Renae Moultrie Wesley, teacher and counselor, Corsicana ISD the late Dawn Jackson Bradfield, former evangelist in North Dakota, forensic scientist.

The list will continue.

Please send your accomplishment to the author, so that you can be included in the forthcoming book “On The Other Side Of The Tracks.”

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2012-03-01 digital edition

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