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ENGRAVED IN DELTA’S HISTORY: Rose McKinney Named Executive Director Emeritus When news circulated to members of the National Executive Board and throughout the National Headquarters building that Soror Roseline McKinney would be retiring at the close of the 53rd Convention, there were mixed emotions of shock, sadness and happiness for the longtime executive director of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. Emotions stirred again at the final board meeting of the 2015 – 2017 administration in July, when, after a unanimous vote, Soror McKinney was named Executive Director Emeritus. After spending her entire career working for Delta Sigma Theta for 45 years and serving as executive director for nearly 30 years, Dr. Paulette C. Walker, 25th National President, bestowed the honor upon Soror McKinney. “The title ‘Executive Director Emeritus’ is well deserved,” said Dr. Walker. “That’s why she was often referred to as the ‘Dean of Executive Directors’ because the executive directors of the other Divine Nine organizations relied upon her wisdom, her forthrightness, and her astuteness. She is a very private person but she was both honored and humbled to receive the title bestowed on her. All one had to do was to look into her eyes.” Soror McKinney began her career at Delta on Oct. 16, 1972 at the first headquarters building located at 1814 M Street NW in Washington, D.C. At the suggestion of a friend of, Clara Allen, the information officer s4 DELTA SIGMA THETA SORORITY, INC. at the time, she applied for the assistant comptroller position and was later interviewed by Soror Lillian Pierce Benbow, 15th National President; Soror Lynnette Taylor, then executive director; and Dr. Betty Smith Williams, then National Treasurer (’71 – ’75). “When we interviewed Rose in 1972, I was sold right away,” recalled Williams. “She always came across as bright, thoughtful and intelligent. Her sincerity, softness and the way she worked with people brought out the better nature of most things.” According to Williams, at the time, the finance office needed help with reorganization and developing financial best practices. The new position made Soror McKinney the first assistant comptroller of the organization. Working in finance before the age of computers made her instrumental in implementing the automation of many of the Sorority’s fiscal procedures. “Rose took hold of things. She designed, developed, stabilized and then grew the department,” said Williams. “Even though a lot of time and effort were required, it provided a tremendous learning experience along with the on-the-job training provided by Mr. Robert Yates, independent auditor and later internal auditor, and the support and wise counsel of Soror Phoebe LeSesne, chair of the National Finance Committee,” said Soror McKinney when recalling what it was like conducting financial transactions manually. During the administration of Mona Bailey, 17th National President, Soror McKinney was later promoted to director of finance administration. The position was later renamed to director of finance in an internal reorganization. In March 1990 under Dr. Yvonne Kennedy, 19th National President, Soror McKinney assumed the responsibilities of interim executive director. Then, following the National Convention in 1990, she was appointed as the executive director by the National Executive Board. “Working under the leadership of Dr. Yvonne Kennedy and her administration to complete the major ren- BY BERNADINE WILLIAMS STALLINGS Soror Roseline McKinney, Executive Director Emeritus PHOTO BY SHARON FARMER


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