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Vol. XXXVIII No. 27 WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. THURSDAY, March 1, 2012
For 25 years,
Club has been
BY LAYLA FARMER
THE CHRONICLE j
It is no secret that country and social clubs do not readily
put out the welcome mat for people of color.
As the Piedmont Club - the posh gathering spot that sits
atop the highrise BB&T building - celebrates its 25th anniver
sary this month, many are lauding the Club bucking tradition
to welcome African American members with open arms.
The Piedmont Club officially opened its doors on March
31, 1987, but the movement to create it began more than a
decade before, explained city native Richard Davis, immediate
past president and a founding member of the Club's Board of
Davis, a retired
plans-were made to
start the an organiza
tion like the
Piedmont ? Club
shortly after he was
elected to Winston
Salem City Council
- then the Board of
Aldermen - in 1970.
"For the first
time in history,
half of the Board (of
were some people
saying we should do
more to fully inte
grate the city."
Though much of
the city had been
integrated years earlier under the Civil Rights Act of-1964,
private clubs were exempt from the ruling, and continued their
discriminatory practices well into the 1970s and '80s, Davis
"All of the private clubs in the city were segregated," said
the married father of one. "We did not have private clubs that
were admitting blacks, Jews and other ethnic groups."
Beyond being left out of the social scene, Davis said
minorities in the city felt that they were being excluded from
many important gatherings that impacted their own families
"There were people who felt like a lot of things went on at
those clubs that actually had control over our lives," he noted.
"People would go to private clubs and make decisions that
affected us ... We could not take part in that discussion."
The movement to create an inclusive club was backed by
African Americans and Caucasians alike and was well
See Club on A9
Photo by Layla Fanner
Richard Davis at the Piedmont Club.
A Family Affair
Pboto by Layla Parmer
Ed Hants Jr. (center) poses with his father, Ed Hants
Sr., his wife, Traci, and daughters, Madelyn and Evelyn,
at an event Tuesday to announce his run for the N.C.
House. Read more on page A12.
Meet Lawrence Joel
Family launches campaign to educate public about history-making soldier
BY LAYLA FARMER
As the daughter of a Congressional Medal of Honor recipi
ent, Dr. Deborah Joel was afforded opportunities most people
never get in a lifetime.
"1 had a rich childhood because of him," said Dr. Joel, the
daughter of the late Lawrence Joel,
the decorated soldier for whom the
Lawrence Joel Veterans Memorial
Coliseum is named. "I've been to the
White House five times, shaking
hands with presidents. I've experi
enced things that really empowered
me in life and helped me to become, I
think, more patriotic. It's been a rich
reward of inheritance from him."
This year, on what would have
been her father's 84th birthday. Dr.
Joel, a resident of Maryland, returned
to her father's birthplace to share ?
some of her inheritance with the
community. The Lawrence Joel Luncheon attracted dozens from
across the state and beyond to the LJVM Coliseum on Feb. 22.
Dr. Joel said the luncheon, which was accompanied by a
museum exhibit showcasing a variety of trinkets and artifacts
related to her father's service, was a celebration of Black History
See Joel on A10
Photos by Todd Luck
From left: Drs. Calvin Howell, Andrea Lawrence, Erich Jarvis and Godfrey Gumbs at SciWorks.
Scientists share their career paths
BY TODD LUCK
Four African-American scientists visited
SciWorks last weekend to encourage local
children to follow in their footsteps.
Drs. Calvin Howell, Andrea Lawrence.
Godfrey Gumbs and Erich Jarvis spent last
Friday and Saturday at the science muse
um, giving presentations, demonstrations and
discussing their professions with local resi
dents, including students enrolled in
Winston-Salem State University's NC
MSEN (Mathematics and Science Education
Network) Pre-College program and the
YWCA's Best Choice Center after school
The scientists' visit was part of the
ScienceMakers. a science and technology
initiative of the nationwide African American
oral history project HistoryMakers.
See Scientists on A5
I OWmUBUTIONS I
? BLACK ?
'First' Ladies Speak
Sprinkle-Hamlin, Evans talk about
BY TODD LUCK
MUtter Evans and Sylvia Sprinkle-Hamlin talked
about their places in history last Friday morning at the
Evans became the first black woman in the country
to own a radio station when she purchased the leg
endary Winston-Salem-based WAAA in the 1970s.
Sprinkle-Hamlin is the first African American to ever
head the Forsyth County Library System, which
includes the Central location and numerous other
branches. The program was among the Library's
expansive Black History Month offerings. Librarian
See First on A2
Photo by Todd Luck
Trailblazers Mutter Evans and Sylivia Sprinkle-Hamlin.
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