departures and returns
In Retrospect |
171
I did not have a mid-western accent. I disagreed strongly, question-
ing the feasibility of expecting that anyone could emulate a style
and voice from a geographic region that was unfamiliar and that
none of the instructors could demonstrate. In addition I advocated
for the need to be more open and accepting of cultural and racial
differences and said that it was the content and accuracy that mat-
tered most, not the voice and tonal quality of the presenter: When
I was a senior, Dr. Burroughs called me into his office and told me
that he had reversed his long-time position and thanked me for my
conviction. That was a very important personal accomplishment
for me although it was not widely known. Dr. Burroughs was very
proud of me and, for several years, always had me to return to
speak to his students.
At the age of 26, I became the youngest African-American and
the second black woman (only two days separated me from the
first) approved by the Federal Communications Commission to
own a radio station in America. WAAA’s commitment to serving
the community through public service, news and useful informa-
tion and playing rhythm & blues, jazz, gospel, and oldies of out-
standing artists, made its credibility and reputation well respected
throughout the state and country.
My mission at WAAA was to inform, inspire, educate, and enter-
tain our listeners, as well as members of my staff. It was infectious
and proved to be a wonderful way for me as an alumna of Wake
Forest University to live up to our motto, Pro Humanitate.
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