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A look into the origin/purpose of the Alumni Association
Chapter origins and history
ALUMNI CHAPTERS BAY AREA (CALIFORNIA) Although the Bay Area Class of 1936 was formally organized in 1968 in the home of Remus and Minnie Barnes, it was not until after the First Reunion of Classes in Detroit, Michigan in 1973, that A. Paul Kidd returned to the Bay Area to organize all Dunbar Alumni into a chapter, regardless of their year of graduation. Thus, chapter members include 1936 graduates as well as members of other class years. Kidd was given credit for keeping the chapter together in spite of the “ups and downs” primarily attributed to a transient membership. Following an interim of one year, Kidd served as president again for two more years. Since Kidd’s presidency, other alumni assumed the leadership role and the group remained intact. From time to time various activities have been held. Perhaps the most noticeable is the Annual Membership Drive Dinner and Dance, the most recent one held in Oakland at the Masonic Lodge. The aim is to bring together all persons living in the area who attended Dunbar High School, Dunbar Junior College and Dunbar Junior High School. The group also seeks to recruit associate members.
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DENVER, COLORADO In July 1978, a group assembled at the home of Bonnie and Malachi Tripp to form a club of Arkansas in the Denver area. During the discussion, it was finally agreed that, instead of an Arkansas Club, a Denver chapter of the National Dunbar Alumni Association of Little Rock, Arkansas would be organized. The National President of the Alumni Association was contacted for information and guidelines for the establishment of a chapter. Following his response, a meeting was held on August 18, 1978 at the home of Byron and Christine Johnson. Twenty-five persons attended and committed themselves to an alumni group. The following officers were elected: Byron Johnson, President Henry Cooper, Vice President Edna Ames Rollerson, Recording Secretary Doris Duncan Smith, corresponding Secretary Marian Ames Wells, Treasurer The membership continued to grow to solidify an active and viable chapter. Charter members included: Velma Washington Brooks, Waldorf Buckley, Thelma Caldwell, Henry Cooper, Jr., Med Cullins, Whaletha Cullins, Minnie Daniels, Tommy Daniels, Betty Peoples Edwards, Fannie Fudge, Rev. Goodwin, Audrey Ames Guest, Robert Harris, Delores Hill, Walter Davis Hill, Huey Jackson, Byron Johnson, Christine Torrence Johnson, Jean Bridges Johnson, Evelyn Colding Jones, Same Jones, Jr., Spencer Jordan, Jr. Jean Ford Luten, Wiley McClain, Robert Richardson, Edna Ames Rollerson, Lillian Shaver, Doris Duncan Smith, Michael Torrence, Bonnie McClain Tripp, Juanita Walls, Billy Washington, Marion Ames Wells, and Gladys Colding Williams. The Denver chapter hosted the Tenth Reunion of Classes July 9-14, 1991 at the Marriot City Center Hotel in downtown Denver.
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS During the 1960s and early 1970s, a small group of the many Dunbar alumni in the Chicago area maintained an informal group relationship as Dunbar alumni. Led by Doris Buckley Matthis, the group came together at various times, usually at an annual picnic. The excitement and inspiration generated by the First Reunion of Classes in Detroit (1973) provided the impetus for the formal organization of the Chicago chapter in September 1973. The first elected officers were: Doris Buckley Matthis, President Beatrice Stevenson Muldrew, First Vice President Newton Long, Second Vice President Robert Hawkins, Third Vice President Dorothy Freeman Cross, Secretary Pauline Smith Brooks, Corresponding Secretary Fannie Dukes Bryant, Financial Secretary Walter Bryant, Treasurer Committee chairpersons were appointed by the president. Samuel Kimbrew was appointed chaplain and Ernestine Long Washington, parliamentarian. A constitution was drawn up by a committee with Dorothy Cross as chairperson. The chapter received its charter received its chapter as a non-profit organization in 1974, recognizing as its purpose, the promotion of fellowship among alumni and engaging in social and charitable endeavors. In 1974, Doris Matthis resigned as president to further her education. Under the leadership of Beatrice Muldrew, President and Newton Long, General Chairman, a most fabulous reunion was held at the Sheraton Chicago Hotel on the “magnificent mile” of Michigan Avenue in July, 1975. The chapter continued to be active in numerous community endeavors, providing volunteer and financial support. Over the years, generous contributions have been made to the United Negro College Fund, Sickle Cell Anemia Foundation, Provident Hospital Drive, National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, Sadie Waterford Manor for Girls, “Chicago Defender” Charities, Donje McNair Liver Transplant Fund, and many other projects and charities.
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