SPECIAL TO THE FLORIDA COURIER
TAMPA — Tempress “Tee” Solomon of Tampa recently was installed as the first president of the Florida State Coalition of the National Council of Negro Women, Inc.
The event comes more than two years after Florida members of the National Council of Negro Women, Inc. (NCNW) began the journey toward a more cohesive organization. Therefore, the 21 community and collegiate sections in Florida operated semiindependently under the umbrella of their national leadership headquartered in Washington, D.C.
“Today my heart is filled with joy and pride. This is a monumental and historic moment for the state of Florida,” said Solomon, a retired educator and local community activist.
Besides Solomon, the following officers were installed on Dec. 6 by Judge Barbara Twine Thomas of the Hillsborough County 13th Judicial Circuit Court: Rachel Oliver, vice president; Atavia White, recording secretary; Mae Welch, assistant recording secretary; Kruzshander Scott, corresponding secretary; Gwendolyn Fields, treasurer; Rose McKay, financial secretary; Sandra Jackson, historian; Emily Rogers, parliamentarian; Rosemary McKinley, chaplain; and Nadelyn Harris, sergeant-at-arms.
“We are serious about Florida’s more forward. … It was a team effort to get to this day,” Solomon said following the Dec. 6 ceremony. “This evening we have put the icing on the cake by getting to our destination, but this is just the start of our journey.”
Among the special guests at the virtual installation was Dr. Johnnetta B. Cole, chair and the seventh national president of NCNW and a resident of Jacksonville.
“Each of you sisters as you step into your roles, you must be the kind of leaders that NCNW deserves—you must be of service to others,” Cole said, “and remain committed to work on behalf of Black women, our families and our communities.”
Also, participating in the event was Dr. Paulette Walker, past national president of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority; Peola McCaskill, National NCNW Parliamentarian Emerita; and national membership co-chairs Dr. Lois Keith and Diane Larche.
Founded by Bethune
NCNW was founded by Dr. Mary McLeod Bethune on Dec. 5, 1935, as an “organization of organizations.” Today it is a network of nearly three million women worldwide.
The organization is open to all persons without regard to gender, race, ethnicity, national origin, sexual orientation or socioeconomic status. Its primary mission is advocating for women of African descent, their families and communities.