XENIA — The public is invited to attend the 37th Annual Recognition Day Luncheon honoring six outstanding Greene County women on Saturday, Sept. 23.
The luncheon will begin at 11:30 a.m. at Walnut Grove Country Club, located astride the Greene-Montgomery county line at 5050 Linden Avenue in Riverside. This year’s featured speaker will be Dr. Nodie Washington, a previous Hall of Fame inductee.
Reservations are $20 and must be paid in advance by mail with the final deadline of September 15, 2017. Guests who prefer a vegetarian option for lunch must note this on the check. Receipt will be held at the door. Checks payable to the Greene County Women’s Hall of Fame should be mailed to PO Box 703, Fairborn, OH 45324. For further information about reservations, call Ann Byrd, Hall of Fame chair at 937-429-1805.
Six Greene County women will be inducted into the Hall of Fame this year, including one posthumously.
Jane Alkire of Xenia will be inducted into the Hall of Fame for her endeavors as a literacy advocate and community volunteer. She was a public school librarian for 32 years, during which time she encouraged young adult literacy and independent research.
Following her retirement, she shares her time and talents working with first graders in small groups or in one-on-one tutoring situations at Tecumseh Elementary. She helps the Xenia Area Fish Food Pantry. She is a board member of the Friends of Xenia Community Library, sets up the annual book sale, and encourages ways to get books into the hands of the public. Alkire is an active involved member of the Greene County Historical Society, a devoted member and trustee of Memorial Presbyterian in Xenia. She has volunteered with children and youth in almost every ministry setting of the church including Interfaith Hospitality Network, X-Out Hunger Backpack program and more.
In her nomination the letter says, “Jane always seems to show up wherever she is needed. If you want something done and done right, ask Jane.”
Hallie Quinn Brown (c1854-1949) of Wilberforce will be posthumously inducted for her endeavors as an educator and public speaker. She was an abolitionist, educator, writer, political activist, and a social reformer. She contributed vast energy toward improving our society in multiple ways. Her many contributions are too numerous to list.
Born in Pennsylvania to former slaves in the mid-1800s (exact date unknown), the family moved to Wilberforce in 1870 where Hallie attended Wilberforce College, graduating in 1873 earning a bachelor of science degree. She taught in schools in the south and in Dayton Public Schools and served as Dean of Women at both Allen University, Columbia, S.C. and at Tuskegee Institute where she worked with Booker T. Washington.
She pioneered the movement for African American women’s clubs in the United States. She died in 1949 at her home in Wilberforce. The Hallie Q. Brown Memorial Library at Central State University in Wilberforce is named in her honor. She is celebrated as an outstanding Greene County woman.
Jo Ferguson of Beavercreek will be inducted for her endeavors as a community volunteer. After serving 33 years within the Beavercreek Schools as a speech and hearing pathologist serving thousands of children, Ferguson is spending her retirement in many volunteer roles. She has been a dedicated to the Beavercreek Senior Adult Advisory Board and Senior Center for many years.
Ferguson served as the travel coordinator at the Senior Center for 16 years, taking more than 4,000 people on 121 trips. She was actively involved in the 2004 formation of the Beavercreek Enrichment Association established to raise funds to assist in furnishing the new center. She also plays the ukulele with the musical group from the center known as the Strummers.
An active member of the Beavercreek Women’s League, she annually organizes a bingo party at the senior center that raises money for the league’s scholarship fund. In 2017, that party alone raised $1,500. Residents may also find her volunteering as a docent or a host at Beavercreek Historical Society.
Joan Horn of Yellow Springs will be inducted for her endeavors as an educator and community volunteer. Joan came to Yellow Springs as an Antioch student and never left. She taught at Mills Lawn Elementary School prior to becoming the long-time director of the Glen Helen Outdoor Education Center, providing adults and children from all over Greene County and Ohio.
Horn has volunteered consistently and extensively with the Yellow Springs Senior Center by driving seniors to appointments for over 15 years, Friends’ Care Community – reading to residents and planning fundraisers, Antioch College and Yellow Springs Home, Inc. – fundraising and event planning. She has also contributed to the Experiment in International Living exchange program. She published a book about an outstanding African American director of music at Antioch College, Walter Anderson. Her nominators said she is “genuinely oriented to helping other people and demonstrating leadership through action.”
Cheryl Marcus of Xenia will be inducted for her endeavors in public education. After graduating from Central State University in 1980, she remained in the area as a Xenia resident. The mother of five successful children, she has committed her life’s work to improving the lives of area youth.
Marcus was elected as a member of the Xenia Community Board of Education, serving from 1994-2001 and 2014-2017. She has served as the board’s president and vice president, and in all her capacities on the board she has been effective in raising the awareness of the district to workforce diversity, curricula enhancements, and to increasing volunteerism and partnerships with local universities.
As an employee of Central State University, Cheryl coordinated the Adopted School Program in five area cities to encourage students to further their education beyond high school. She is also active with Xenia School Foundation, President of Wilberforce Links, the City of Xenia, the Chamber of Commerce and more.
A nominee said that, “with integrity, grace and humor, she continues to unite, lead and build bridges, to foster inclusion, empowerment and education.”
Virginia Pinkerton of Cedarville will be inducted into the Hall of Fame for her endeavors as an educator and community volunteer. She taught home economics and English for 17 years in the Cedar Cliff and Greeneview Local School Districts serving as an advisor to many groups during her tenure.
Following retirement, she served as president and vice president of the Greene County Retired Teachers Association. Pinkerton is an active member of the Cedar Cliff Daughters of the American Revolution where she has served as regent and on many committees. She was also esponsible for securing a matching $10,000 grant to restore veterans’ graves at Stevenson Cemetery.
She is an active member and past matron of the Aldora Chapter Order of the Eastern Star. At Faith Community United Methodist Church, she has served for 11 years as the food coordinator of the Common Cup program where she averaged 25-30 volunteer hours per week.
One of her nominators said, ” She isa very dedicated, passionate and loyal woman who puts others’ needs before her own.”
Story courtesy of Greene County Women’s Hall of Fame.