Hulon Willis Association

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The Hulon Willis Association (or HWA), an affinity group of the College of William and Mary's Alumni Association, was formally established in 1992. The association was named after Hulon Willis, William and Mary's first African American student, who received in Master's degree in Education, specializing in Physical education in 1956, after completing his degree during summer terms.

Contents

Development of HWA

The concept for the HWA began when some African-American alumni of the college began to discuss the need for support for African American students on the William and Mary campus, and a greater understanding and sense of community between African American alumni. "The history of the association goes back to 1986, when Dr. Carroll Hardy... Julian White '83 and Elizabeth Young-Kirksey '83... first started talking about the possibility of forming a black alumni group." ("Hulon Willis Association Established by Alumni Society for Black Alumni," William and Mary Magazine, Summer 1992, 42.). A steering committee to decide the direction of the group was formed during the homecoming of 1989, this group had its own homecoming hospitality suite and a few special events. The son of the association’s namesake, Hulon Willis Jr., was one of the members of the steering committee. John Lever ’91 was the staff liaison for the Hulon Willis Association. Hardy, White, and Young-Kirksey approached the Society for Alumni with their proposal to form the group in 1991. At this time the Society for Alumni passed a resolution to assist the association with organization and the creation of their bylaws.

Establishment

Before the HWA was created, there were a few events for Black Alumni and students. These included the Black Student Organization dance and Black Alumni Breakfast during Homecoming weekend. These events grew in importance and attendance as the Hulon Willis Association was in the organizational stages. Leading up to the first proposal offered to the Board of the Alumni Association, Black alumni held breakfasts and receptions during Homecomings from 1989-1991. In the summer of 1991, a proposal for the group was submitted to the Society for Alumni of the College of Williams and Mary by Dr. Carol Hardy on behalf of the steering committee. In April of 1992, the Hulon Willis Association “was given official recognition by the Society's Board of Directors” ("Hulon Willis Association Established by Alumni Society for Black Alumni, "William and Mary Magazine, Summer 1992, 42.). In this meeting the Society for Alumni voted to adopt the bylaws of the newly formed group and support their growth and mission. The following summer a newsletter went out to alumni to introduce the HWA to alumni and to recruit new members to their organization.

Mission and Goals

The mission of the Hulon Willis Association in many ways matched the main missions of the Society of Alumni as a body. However, their emphasis was on improving and adding to the experience of African American students and alumni. Their mission statement states that "H.W.A is part of the Society of the Alumni of the College of William and Mary... [it] promotes the involvement of its members through sponsored programs, projects, activities and events in order to preserve the legacy and history of African-American students and to enhance the participation of all alumni, faculty, staff and students in the College community" (The Hulon Willis Association Newsletter, Volume 1, Issue 1, August 1992.). The main issue the group faced was the fact that many African American alumni felt disconnected with the college, many because of negative experiences while in attendance and others simply because they did not feel there was a welcome place for them as alumni. The HWA worked to combat these negative feelings and provide a place for black alumni to become involved with the college again. Their bylaws supported this mission, and also worked to prevent this disconnect from occurring with current students. "The H.W.A bylaws state that 'as a service organization, the H.W.A. is dedicated to improving the quality of life of students at the College". ("Hulon Willis Association Established by Alumni Society for Black Alumni, "William and Mary Magazine, Summer 1992, 42-43) Early practical goals to accomplish this included recruiting black students, uniting black alumni, helping current black students through job placement and scholarship programs.

Early Years

On September 19, 1992, the HWA steering committee held a special meeting with the president of the College of William and Mary as their guest speaker. Their kickoff for alumni involvement took place during Homecoming 1992. At this homecoming they had a special HWA membership table at the main events of homecoming where alumni could join and learn more about the HWA. During Homecoming the first election of officers for the HWA was held on October 17, 1992. (The Hulon Willis Association Newsletter, Volume 1, Issue 1, August 1992) In this first homecoming the group formally participated in, they held a Black Greek Alumni Reception, a Hospitality Gathering, and the Black Student Organization Homecoming Dance. They also encouraged members to attend the Black Student Organization Step Show.

In 1993 the Society for Alumni discussed the HWA in their spring meeting and noted in their minutes that "The progress of the Hulon Willis Association received positive comments." May 1, 1993, was the first Hulon Willis Association Board Meeting. Between that meeting and Homecoming weekend the group sponsored many events including a pre-game barbeque luncheon, a reception with the Black Faculty and Staff Caucus, and a fall board meeting. During homecoming 1993 HWA events included the HWA Career Networking Workshop for Alumni and Students, an HWA Hospitality Suite, and the HWA Brunch and Annual Meeting. The brunch and hospitality suite became yearly occurrences.

Annual Events

The Hulon Willis Association began to hold board meetings twice annually, in the spring and the fall. They also hosted a number of other yearly events. On April 8, 1994, the Hulon Willis Association held its first African American Admitted Students Reception at Alfred Street Baptist Church in Alexandria, Virginia. At this event admitted students had a chance to meet with African American alumni to be honored for their admittance and to learn more about the college. This became a yearly occurrence. It became common for the HWA to host pre-game barbecues and post-game receptions for its members. During the 1994 Homecoming, events extended to include Sunday morning worship at a local church. In 1995 the HWA board meetings became more frequent, occurring every few months, sometimes 4 or 5 times a year. On September 7, 1996, the HWA hosted a Black Alumni and Student Day at the College. On October 26, 1996, they sponsored an Art Show and Sale as a fundraiser. By 2000 the HWA had achieved a status as one of the major alumni affinity groups and had many events through the Homecoming season. By 2001, the HWA was partnering with the Office of Multicultural Affairs and began hosting and awards night where they honored students receiving the HWA scholarships. In 2005 they added a bowling event to their Homecoming activities.

Recent Association Happenings

The Hulon Willis Association continues to meet yearly during homecoming. The Board of the HWA meets two to three times annually and the HWA continues to be an active part of the alumni community. In 2003 the HWA created the HWA Community Liaison position to spread their message to the community outside of William and Mary. Also in May of 2003 the HWA voted to begin collecting dues for association membership to offset rising costs. In 2011 the HWA along with the William and Mary SURE program hosted the Alumni Homecoming reception, a Black Alumni networking reception, a reunion for Ebony Expressions, a Comedy Lounge and Soul Jazz Lounge at the Kingsmill Mariott, and a Black Alumni official homecoming finale party. Along with the homecoming events is the ongoing HWA Awards Ceremony where students and alumni are honored for their work in multicultural affairs of the college.

Scholarships and Awards

The Hulon Willis Association offers scholarship and recognition to campus members involved in African American student life. The Hulon Willis Association Impact Award was given to Dr. Warren W. Buck for founding the BSO.

The Hulon Willis Sr. Memorial Scholarship was also established. An advertisement for it from the Flat Hat: "The Hulon Willis Association is named after the first African-American alumnus of the College. HWA has established the Hulon Willis Sr. Memorial Scholarship Endowment to provide financial assistance for minority students at the College. The opportunities provided by the scholarship assist deserving students who exemplify the qualities of HWA to enrich the diversity of the College community." ("Hulon Willis Association," Flat Hat, March 14, 2003, 6)

Chronology

  • pre-HWA events included: a Black Student Organization Dance and a Black Alumni Breakfast Buffet
  • 1989, November 5: Black Alumni Breakfast Buffet
  • 1990, November 2: Black Alumni Reception
  • 1991, Summer: Proposal for the group was submitted by Dr. Hardy.
  • 1991, October 19: Black Alumni Reception in the Muscarelle Museum of Art
  • 1991,October: Alumni Association passed a resolution to allow and assist in the development of a Black Alumni Group
  • 1992, April: Hulon Willis Association "was given official recognition by the Society's Board of Directors." ("Hulon Willis Association Established by Alumni Society for Black Alumni," William and Mary Magazine, Summer 1992, 42.)
  • 1992, April 10: The Alumni Board voted to adopt the bylaws of the HWA during its Spring Meeting.
  • 1992, Summer: Newsletter sent out to introduce the Hulon Willis Association to Black Alumni.
  • 1992, August: Mission Statement "H.W.A is part of the Society of the Alumni of the College of William and Mary... [it] promotes the involvement of its members through sponsored programs, projects, activities and events in order to preserve the legacy and history of African-American students and to enhance the participation of all alumni, faculty, staff and students in the College community." (The Hulon Willis Association Newsletter, Volume 1, Issue 1, August 1992.)
  • 1992, Summer: "The H.W.A bylaws state that 'as a service organization, the H.W.A. is dedicated to improving the quality of life of students at the College.'" ("Hulon Willis Association Established by Alumni Society for Black Alumni," William and Mary Magazine, Summer 1992, 42-43.)
  • 1992, September 19: "Meeting of the H.W.A. Steering Committee with special guest Timothy J. Sullivan '66, President, College of William and Mary." (The Hulon Willis Association Newsletter, Volume 1, Issue 1, August 1992.)
  • 1992, October: Kickoff during 1992 Homecoming season, special HWA membership table
  • 1992, October: First elections took place during Homecoming.
  • 1992, October 16: Black Student Organization Step Show and Dance, Black Greek Alumni Reception
  • 1992,October 17: HWA reception sponsored by the BSO "Official Kickoff and Election of Officers for H.W.A." (The Hulon Willis Association Newsletter, Volume 1, Issue 1, August 1992.)
  • 1992, October 17: H.W.A Hospitality Gathering
  • 1992, October 17: Black Student Organization Homecoming Dance
  • 1993, April: HWA mentioned in Board Meeting minutes of the Society of Alumni, "The progress of the Hulon Willis Association received positive comments."
  • 1993, May 1, Hulon Willis association Board meeting
  • 1993, September 10: The Hulon Willis Association Board along with the William and Mary Black faculty and Staff Forum are honored at a pre-game barbeque luncheon hosted by the Society of Alumni of the College of William and Mary.
  • 1993, September 11: HWA Fall Board Meeting in the Alumni House
  • 1993, September 11: Hulon Willis Association Reception with Black Faculty/Staff Caucus in the Reeves Center for International Studies
  • 1993, October 22: HWA Career Networking Workshop for Alumni and Students
  • 1993, October 22: HWA Hospitality Suite
  • 1993. October 23: HWA Brunch and Annual Meeting
  • 1993, October 23: HWA Hospitality Suite
  • 1994, February 5: Hulon Willis Association Board of Directors Meeting at the Alumni House
  • 1994, April 8: Hulon Willis Association African –American Admitted Students Reception at Alfred Street Baptist Church, Alexandria , VA
  • 1994, April 23: Hulon Willis Association Board of Directors Meeting
  • 1994, May 4: HWA Fundraising Committee Meeting in the home of Julian L. White.
  • 1994, August 20: HWA Executive Committee Meeting
  • 1994, September 10: HWA Board Meeting
  • 1994, September 10: HWA Black Staff/Faculty Forum Pre-Game Barbeque
  • 1994, November 5: HWA Post-Game Reception
  • 1994, November, 6: HWA Sunday Worship
  • 1994. December 3: HWA Board Meeting
  • 1995, April 6: HWA African-American Admitted Students Reception
  • 1995, May 20: HWA Board of Directors Meeting in Richmond
  • 1995, September 16: HWA Fall Board Meeting /Long Range Planning
  • 1995 October 28: HWA and BSO Annual Reception
  • 1995, December 2: HWA Board Meeting
  • 1996, January 6: HWA Board Meeting
  • 1996 March 2: HWA Board Meeting
  • 1996, April 14: HWA Northern Virginia Admitted Students Reception at Alexandria Black History Resource Center
  • 1996, April 16: HWA Richmond Admitted Students Reception
  • 1996, May 4-5: HWA Board Retreat
  • 1996, July 13: HWA Board Meeting
  • 1996, September 7: HWA Board Meeting
  • 1996, September 7: HWA Black Alumni and Student Day
  • 1996, October 25: HWA Board Meeting
  • 1996, October 26: HWA sponsored Art Show and Sale
  • 1996, October 26: HWA Annual Meeting and Reception
  • 1997, March 1: HWA Board of Directors Meeting
  • 1997, April 11: HWA Admitted Students Reception
  • 1997, May 17: HWA Board of Directors Meeting
  • 1997, July 19: HWA Board of Directors Meeting and Picnic
  • 1997, August 30: HWA post-Game Tailgate at WM vs. Hampton University
  • 1997, Homecoming: HWA table at Luncheon on the lawn, Annual Reception, Annual Meeting
  • 1998, Homecoming: See above
  • 1999, Homecoming: See above
  • 2000, October 27: HWA Hospitality Suite during homecoming at the Quality Inn Historic District
  • 2000, October 28: HWA Parade Watch and Continental Breakfast
  • 2000, October 28: HWA Table at Luncheon-on-the-Lawn
  • 2000, October 28: HWA / Office of Multi cultural Affairs Joint Reception
  • 2001, October 26: HWA Parade Watch and Continental Breakfast
  • 2001, October 26: HWA Joint Reception with Office of Multicultural Affairs
  • 2001, October 26: HWA Silent Auction
  • 2001, October 26: HWA Awards Dinner
  • 2003, November 1: HWA Joint Reception with Office of Multicultural affairs
  • 2003, March 14: Adveristement appears in Flat Hat "The Hulon Willis Association is named after the first African-American alumnus of the College. HWA has established the Hulon Willis Sr. Memorial Scholarship Endowment to provide financial assistance for minority students at the College. The opportunities provided by the scholarship assist deserving students who exemplify the qualities of HWA to enrich the diversity of the College community." ("Hulon Willis Association," Flat Hat, March 14, 2003, 6.)
  • 2005, October 21: HWA Welcome Back and bowl
  • 2005, October 22: HWA Black Family Reunion Picnic
  • 2005, October 22: HWA Post-Step Show Throwback Party
  • 2005, October 23: HWA Sunday Worship/ Fellowship at the First Baptist Church on Scotland Street
  • 2008, Homecoming Weekend: HWA Annual Reunion

Presidents

(incomplete)

  • Julian White, 1992
  • Christal Woodson, 1992-1993
  • Deborah Lynn Parker, 1997
  • Katherine Washington, 2000-2001
  • Gloria Waller Coleman, 2002-2003
  • Sacha Thompson, 2004-2005

Steering Committee and HWA Board

(incomplete)

  • Roger Bailey '81, 1989-91
  • Tonya Baker '88, 1989-91
  • Lynn Briley '71, 1989-91
  • Jane Carpenter '92, 1989-91
  • Reginald Clark '75, 1989-91
  • Kermit Dance '73, 1989-91
  • Larry Griffith '86, 1989-91
  • Debbie Locke '77, 1989-91
  • Gail McClenney '83, 1989-91
  • Donna Moore Moon '79, 1989-91
  • Deborah Parker '77, 1989-91
  • Eric Revis '75, 1989-91
  • Mitzi Keyes Stallings '81, 1989-91
  • Rayna Turner '85, 1989-91
  • Marilynn Vaughan '77, 1989-91
  • Gloria Waller '76, 1989-91
  • Julian White '83, 1989-91
  • Rubenia Williams-Winston '74, 1989-91
  • Warren Winston '73, 1989-91
  • Hulon Willis, Jr. '77, 1989-91
  • Elizabeth Young-Kirksey '83, 1989-91
  • Sacha Thompson '97 M.Ed. '99, 2003-2005
  • Joseph D. Wilkins '98, 2003-2005
  • Jeff Bourne '99, 2003-2005
  • Melvin Griffin '96, 2003-2005
  • Vera Marsh Judge '91, 2003
  • Shawn L. Knight '94, 2003-2005
  • Shawn W. Overbey '92, J.D. '96, 2003
  • Clenise Platt '94, 2003-2004
  • Tunisia Riley '00, 2003-2005
  • Daryl S. Taylor, Esq. '92, J.D. '96, 2003
  • Katherine L. Washington '90, 2003
  • Kanisha R. Williams-Jones '93, 2003-2005
  • Ted Wynn '91, 2003
  • Elizabeth Young '83, 2003-2005
  • Saskia N. Campbell '02, 2004-2005
  • Jaqueline F. Clark '94, 2004-2005
  • Juanita W. Dillard M.Ed '70, 2004-2005
  • Troy D. Keen '96, 2004-2005
  • Michael P. Parker '03, 2004

References

  • "Two Honored by Hulon Willis Association". William and Mary News, 11/17/1993, 2.
  • "Hulon Willis Association inducts officers." Alumni Gazette, December 1993, 9.
  • "Hulon Willis Association co-sponsors Homecoming reception." Alumni Gazette, December 1995, 4.
  • "Hulon Williams Association cosponsors black Alumni and Student Day." William and Mary News, 2/7/1996, 3.
  • "Association of 1775, Hulon Willis Association provide Fellowship through the generations." Alumni Gazette, February 1996, 5.
  • "Hulon Willis Association co-sponsors Black Alumni and Student Day featuring George Fraser." Alumni Gazette, August 1996, 5.
  • "Hulon Willis Association sponsors George Fraser visit." Alumni Gazette, December 1996, 5.
  • "Hulon Willis celebrates five years." Alumni Gazette, March 1998, 5.
  • "Black Alumni and Student Day" William and Mary News, 8/20.1998, 3.
  • "Hulon Willis Association Established by Alumni Society for Black Alumni." William and Mary Magazine, Summer 1992, 42-43.
  • "Alumni Board of Directors Installs New Officers." Alumni Gazette, May 1992 Vol. 59, No. 7.
  • The Hulon Willis Association Newsletter, Volume 1, Issue 1, August 1992.
  • The Flat Hat, August 25, 2006 Vol.96, NO.1, 1.
  • Flat Hat, March 14, 2003, Brief "Hulon Willis Association," 6.
  • Alumni, Society of the, 1990-1999, Announcements and Miscellaneous Box 3 Folder 3. UA 80 Swem Library Archives
  • Alumni, Society of the, Programming Calendars (March 1991-January 1994) Box 5 folder 3 UA 80 Swem Library Archives
  • Alumni, Society of the, Board of Directors. Minutes and Agenda July 1992, page 4 of minutes section.
  • Alumni Association Records, UA 80 Series 7
  • William and Mary Alumni Magazine. Winter 2008, Volume 74, Number 2.

Material in the Special Collections Research Center

  • Alumni Association Records.
  • The Flat Hat student newspaper.
  • William & Mary News
  • William & Mary Alumni Magazine
  • Colonial Echo yearbook.

Researchers are encouraged to consult Swem Library's online catalog and databases for these secondary sources.

Need help?

To search for further material, visit the Special Collections Research Center's Search Tool List for an overview of the Special Collections Database, W&M Digital Archive, Flat Hat-William & Mary News-Alumni Gazette index, card catalogs, and other tools available to help you find material of interest in the Swem Library's Special Collections Research Center.

Questions? Contact the Special Collections Research Center at spcoll@wm.edu or 757-221-3090, or visit the Special Collections Research Center in the Earl Gregg Swem Library at the College of William and Mary.

A Note About The Contents Of This Wiki
The information available in this wiki is the best available from known documents and sources at the time it was written. Unfortunately, many of the early original records of the College of William and Mary were destroyed by fires, military occupation, and the normal effects of time. The information available here is the best available from known documents and sources at the time it was written. Information in this wiki is not complete as new information continues to be uncovered in the Swem Library's Special Collections Research Center and elsewhere. Researchers are strongly encouraged to use the Special Collections search tools for their research as the information contained in this wiki is by no means comprehensive.
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