What’s New from the Greater New York Tougaloo Alumni Chapter?

Courtney Newsome ‘04, President

In 2020 and the first half of 2021, the Greater New York Tougaloo Alumni Chapter participated in efforts to raise funds for the College and sponsored activities to inform students in the New York/New Jersey area of the many benefits of attending our beloved Eagle Queen and HBCUs/UNCF institutions. Personal accolades were also achieved by members of the chapter.

To raise funds for our institution, the chapter hosted an auction of items donated by members of the chapter and a local artist (including homemade blankets, gift baskets, and jewelry), held as an online virtual event. The event was spearheaded by chapter treasurer Evelyn Lewis and vice president Elane Coleman. A total of $1,761.50 was donated to Tougaloo’s 1869 Fund on behalf of the chapter. Sincere appreciation is extended to those who supported the event.

To raise awareness of the positive outcomes of attending Tougaloo, chapter president Courtni Newsome participated in a discussion/presentation along with recruiter Joel Swan, as part of a virtual HBCU information session for NYC-area high school guidance counselors and college access programs. During the session, personal stories were shared, and participants were able to gain insight into differences and similarities between Mississippi and the various areas of New York state. The chapter has recently been included in the Greater NY-Inter Alumni Council of the UNCF and will participate in activities to ensure that Tougaloo is represented.

Chapter secretary Frank Williams received the honorary degree of Doctor of Humane Letters from The College of Westchester. This was awarded in recognition of decades of public service to the youth of the city of White Plains, NY.

The chapter envisions continuing to establish activities that will bring financial support to our institution and engaging in endeavors that will promote Tougaloo in the greater NY area.

In the early spring of this year, we informed of the transition of alumna Lynda Woods Cleary, class of 1972. Lynda was one of the longest serving members of the chapter. She also worked tirelessly for the Inter Alumni Council of the National Alumni Council, her beloved Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, and countless other local, regional and national civic and professional organizations. To paraphrase the comments of those who knew her, “When she decided to act, she did so with great determination and was a force to be reckoned with.” Lynda will be missed dearly.