Heritage Hall of Fame

2003

Dorothy Buckner

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Dorothy Buckner a native of Van Buren, Arkansas, Dorothy Johnson was born September 9, 1927, the seventh of eight children born to Luther E. and Pearl E. Johnson. During the Depression, her family moved to Idaho. She attended elementary schools in Minidoka, Nampa and Boise, went to Boise High and finally graduated from Boise College.

For a few years, Dorothy lived in Manhattan, New York, where she studied drama and worked as a fashion model. It was there that she developed a lifelong love of jazz and blues. She enjoyed sharing the stories of great musicians she met and appreciated during her time in the city that never sleeps.

Shortly after returning to Boise, she married Aurelius Buckner on September 10, 1950. Together they raised four children (Charles, Cherie, Pepper and Carol) spoiled four grandchildren (Sean and Phillip Thompson, Shi Charlson and Tallia Cherry), and doted on their great-grandson, Deshawne White. She distinguished herself by fighting for civil rights in her community throughout her lifetime.

She had many passions. She amassed an impressive library of works by black authors and immersed herself in her love for the theater, art, gardening, gourmet cooking, decorating, fishing, entertaining, knitting, crewel embroidery, stenciling and music. She thoroughly enjoyed them all and conscientiously encouraged everyone she met to broaden their horizons and experience the world.

Mrs. Dorothy Buckner was a committed, active member of the Boise community who worked tirelessly on behalf of the issues she believed in. A lecturer and civil rights activist, she readily spoke out against injustice. She served multiple terms on the Board of Directors of the Treasure Valley branch of the NAACP, collaborated in crafting strategy for development of the Idaho Human Rights Commission and lobbied on behalf of the original Idaho Civil Rights bill (as well as the expanded version), served as a member of the Idaho Advisory Committee to the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights and on the Board of Directors of Citizens for Civic Unity and the YWCA. Mrs. Buckner was the founder and Executive Director of the River Street Neighborhood Center, volunteered at the Veterans Hospital, served as a YTeen advisor and assisted in the development of sensitivity and leadership training for local law enforcement and community entities. The distinctive accomplishments of Mrs. Buckner, who passed away on August 2, 2003, culminated a distinguished civil rights career. We are honored to designate her a Hall of Fame member.

Bervester Edwards

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Charles Maxwell, Sr., born on October 24, 1931, in Midville, Georgia, Charles was raised an activist with an overwhelming need to give back to his community, to serve his country and to learn new things. At the age of sixteen, he enlisted in the United States Army, where he was assigned to the Special Service Unit as part of the European Command in Germany. The fact that he had to serve his country in a segregated unit had a huge impact on him, and reinforced his vow to fight for civil rights.

When he returned to the U.S., he moved to the racially-charged Detroit of the 1950s, and not long thereafter, decided to rejoin the military. This time, he joined the Air Force Reserves, and then returned to active duty. No matter where he was, Charles distinguished himself by fighting for civil rights in that community.After a long and distinguished career in the military, including being one of the first AfricanAmericans to be hired for the NASA program in the early 1960s, he moved to Boise in the late 1970s and started working for Hewlett-Packard.

Right away, Charles became a civil rights keystone. Within the Boise community, he used his outstanding people skills to help ease adaptability issues experienced by people of all colors. While at HP, he often took new employees under his wing and pointed out how civil rights in the workplace had come a long way, sharing examples of the hardships he had faced. In fact, one of Charless famous sayings, “It is not where you are, it is what you do where you are that iss important,” helped numerous employees at Hewlett-Packard be more receptive to positive change in their work and home environments.

A tireless supporter of the NAACP, Charles worked as an Executive Committee member, and helped to make Martin Luther Kings birthday and the Nineteenth of June, (Juneteenth), statewide holidays. In addition, Charles was one of the founding members of the Ada County Human Rights Task Force, a member of The Northwest Coalition against Malicious Harassment, a member of American Legion, Post 2, a proud member of Sabre Lodge Number 7 F&AM, (PHA), and a founding member of the Idaho Black History Museum. The singularly distinctive accomplishments of Charles, who passed away on June 15, 2003, culminated a distinguished civil rights career we are proud to honor with his selection as a Hall of Fame member.

Charles Maxwell, Sr

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Charles Maxwell, Sr., born on October 24, 1931, in Midville, Georgia, Charles was raised an activist with an overwhelming need to give back to his community, to serve his country and to learn new things. At the age of sixteen, he enlisted in the United States Army, where he was assigned to the Special Service Unit as part of the European Command in Germany. The fact that he had to serve his country in a segregated unit had a huge impact on him, and reinforced his vow to fight for civil rights.

When he returned to the U.S., he moved to the racially-charged Detroit of the 1950s, and not long thereafter, decided to rejoin the military. This time, he joined the Air Force Reserves, and then returned to active duty. No matter where he was, Charles distinguished himself by fighting for civil rights in that community. After a long and distinguished career in the military, including being one of the first AfricanAmericans to be hired for the NASA program in the early 1960s, he moved to Boise in the late 1970s and started working for Hewlett-Packard.

Right away, Charles became a civil rights keystone. Within the Boise community, he used his outstanding people skills to help ease adaptability issues experienced by people of all colors. While at HP, he often took new employees under his wing and pointed out how civil rights in the workplace had come a long way, sharing examples of the hardships he had faced. In fact, one of Charles’s famous sayings, “It’s not where you are, it’s what you do where you are that’s important,” helped numerous employees at Hewlett-Packard be more receptive to positive change in their work and home environments.

A tireless supporter of the NAACP, Charles worked as an Executive Committee member, and helped to make Martin Luther King’s birthday and the Nineteenth of June, (Juneteenth), statewide holidays. In addition, Charles was one of the founding members of the Ada County Human Rights Task Force, a member of The Northwest Coalition against Malicious Harassment, a member of American Legion, Post 2, a proud member of Sabre Lodge Number 7 F&AM, (PHA), and a founding member of the Idaho Black History Museum. The singularly distinctive accomplishments of Charles, who passed away on June 15, 2003, culminated a distinguished civil rights career we are proud to honor with his selection as a Hall of Fame member.

2004

Jim Holden

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Jim Holden was born in Brooklyn, New York, And attended thirteen years of Catholic Schools where he absorbed the social teaching of the church. After service in the Air Force, during which he was stationed at Mountain Home, he completed an apprenticeship as a newspaper pressman. Jim was an active union member serving in several leadership roles. A long time member of the NAACP, he served on the Executive Board and as a liaison between that organization and the Idaho State AFL-CIO. He feels it is important to make everyone, especially minorities, aware that they are welcome in the house of labor.

He is firmly convinced that government is not the enemy but the avenue through which equity, fairness and justice can be assured for all citizens. In accordance with this conviction, he was a candidate for the Idaho House of Representatives, attended several state Democratic conventions as a delegate and is serving on the Ada County Democratic Central Committee. An opponent of the death penalty, Jim has participated in a weekly protest vigil for almost seven years. He is presently a member of the St.Johns Cathedral parish social justice committee. While stationed at Mountain Home AFB he met and married a Boise girl, Brenda Leeburn, and never went back to New York. They are the parents of four children and grandparents of four. For the past sixteen years, Jim has been an active member of the Treasure Valley Branch of the NAACP. He is a past member of the Executive Committee and a past Chairman of Labor and Industry Committee. He worked with other NAACP members to make Martin Luther King, Jr. birthday and “Juneteenth” statewide holidays.

Clarisse Mims Maxwell

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Mrs. Clarisse Mims Maxwell was born in the great state of Georgia, in the small city of Macon. She is a true “Georgia peach.” Zora Neale Hurston, one of our great writers, wrote that her self-identity was greatly influenced by how she felt as a girl growing up in the United States. Mrs. Maxwell grew up in a time in the United States when civil rights were still presented as causes worth dying for. It was a time in our history when most women knew their place in society and the laws of the land made sure most African Americans stayed pretty close to the farm.

Early on in her life, Clarisse discovered sentiments expressed by Maya Angelou in her book “Wouldn’t Take Nothing For My Journey Now,” that “being a woman is hard work.” “And if you are a minority female,” as Ms. Angelou puts it, “she must have convinced herself, or be in the unending process of convincing herself, that she, her values, and her choices are important. In a time and world where males hold sway and control, the pressure upon women to yield their rights-of-way is tremendous. And it is under those very circumstances that the woman’s toughness must be in evidence.”

Mrs. Clarisse Mims Maxwell demonstrated her toughness by staying true to her values. In an article about a Portrait of a Distinguished Citizen, the Idaho Statesman reported in its July 4th, 1993 edition, “Clarisse values peace and harmony, and devotes much of her time to helping create them.”

Clarisse earned her Baccalaureate degree from Talladega College in Talladega, Alabama, and a Master’s degree from Southern Illinois University in Carbondale, Illinois. Since moving to Boise in 1980, Mrs. Clarisse Mims Maxwell has been a civil rights hero in the Treasure Valley and throughout the state of Idaho. She chaired the Governor’s Task Force on the Martin Luther King Jr./Idaho Human Rights Day for two years; she served on the board of directors of the Treasure Valley Council of Church and Social Action and the Boise YWCA; she is member of the St. Paul Baptist Church and was a member of the Northwest Coalition Against Malicious Harassment. Additionally, she is a commissioner on the Idaho Human Rights Commission, the Idaho Personnel Commission, and an active member of the Ada County Human Rights Task Force.

Mrs. Maxwell’s honors include the following: She was the Idaho Statesman Distinguished Citizen, 1993, she received the Idaho Voices of Faith United Nations Human Rights Day Award, 1995, she was awarded Boise Woman of Distinction by Soroptimist International, 1996, and in 1996, she received the March of Dimes White Rose Award.

Clarisse understands the meaning of what Frederick Douglass expressed when he said, “if there is no struggle, there is no progress.” She has served as an Executive Committee member and as Past Vice President for the Treasure Valley Branch of the NAACP. She worked diligently for many years with other NAACP members to make Martin Luther King, Jr.’s birthday and the Nineteenth of June, “Juneteenth,” statewide holidays. She is also a founding member of the Board of Directors, of the Idaho Black History Museum.

Charles J. Warren and Nadyne J. Warren

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Mr. Charles J. Warren and Mrs. Nadyne J. Warren are two of those outstanding individuals. They distinguished themselves by ensuring civil rights were enforced fairly in communities throughout the State of Idaho.

They were born in the southern states of Tennessee and Texas respectfully. Both were raised by parents who instilled in each, an overwhelming need to be God fearing, to give back to their fellow citizens, to serve their country, and to pass these values on to their two children, Michael and Pamela.

Young and single, they both left their homes in the South in the middle of the World War II dominated 1940s. They left to find a place where they could earn a “living wage” with one of those so-called “good paying jobs.” Mr. Warren worked as a certified welder for Bethlehem Steel in Alameda, California. Charles also pursued his musical passion when he became a member of the “Musicians’ Local.” Mrs. Warren earned her cosmetology license and worked as a certified beautician.

During these difficult times in the United States, minorities were not allowed to work in certain jobs regardless of their level of qualification. This reality was strictly enforced in the South and other parts of the United States with the notorious “Black codes.” In these troubled times, Charles and Nadyne were blessed when they discovered each other. They met in the northern California bay city of Oakland in 1949 and after a “hot and steamy-two-year courtship” they were married. The Warrens recently celebrated their 53rd wedding anniversary. Their early life experiences solidified their opinion of the need to change the social structure of the United States and to fight for civil rights.

Due to the economic slow down in California in 1958, the Warrens moved to Boise seeking a better way of life, the “American Dream,” and a place where they could safely raise their children, Michael and Pamela, and grandchildren, Frank, Jr. and Jacob. Once established in Boise, the Warrens soon became one of the main civil rights hubs for their local community. Because of his outstanding work ethics and moral values displayed as a brick mason and businessman, Mr. Warren was asked by his fellow citizens to run for President of the Boise branch of the NAACP in 1968 and much to his surprise, he won! He was sworn in on January 20th 1969, the same day Richard Nixon took office as the President of the United States.

From 1969 to the present, the Warrens have been a civil rights force in their adopted hometown, the city of Boise. They are enthusiastic supporters of the NAACP, where they serve as Executive Committee members. They worked tirelessly with other NAACP members to make Martin Luther King, Jr.’s birthday and the Nineteenth of June, “Juneteenth,” statewide holidays. They are also founding members of the Idaho Black History Museum.

Father John O’Sullivan

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Father John O’Sullivan was born in 1925 in the beautiful country of Ireland; he was called to the priesthood in 1943. After he was called to God’s service, he was sent to the United States to study theology in the state of Illinois, near Chicago.

During his early years in the United States of America, Father O’Sullivan observed firsthand that minorities were not treated fairly or justly. He later discovered that this was not just regional; it was also the case in the South and many other parts of the United States. He also discovered that for the most part, the Church did not react to problems of race or the lack of civil rights for minorities.

In these distressed times, Father O’Sullivan’s faith and life experiences led him to the realization that the hearts of some of the people required change. He pledged to continue to do God’s work by fighting for civil and human rights around the world.

Father O’Sullivan was ordained in 1950, and on January 1, 1952, he arrived in the Gold Coast, a country on the west coast of the continent of Africa. He lived in the British colony for six years. While there, he experienced the citizen celebration for the new independent nation of Ghana on March 6, 1957. Ghana became and is still a member of British Commonwealth, with a population of over 8 million people. Father O’Sullivan was proud to live in the independent nation of Ghana for another 13 years.

Father O’Sullivan’s faith and willingness to perform God’s work also placed him in the forefront of the lives of many young Ghanaians. In Ghana, he worked as a teacher at the Achimota School in Accra, the capital city. He instilled moral values in his students, who later, would act as beacons of light for the appreciation of human and civil rights. During Father O’ Sullivan’s 19-year career at Achimota, he and the staff prepared over 10,000 students to become productive world citizens. His many students included a future head of state of Ghana, Jerry Rawlings, and numerous business and civic leaders. The students have taken and operationalized the moral values instilled by Father O’Sullivan at Achimota to the four corners of the earth.

In 1970, after 19 years of faithful service in Ghana, God called Father O’Sullivan back to the United States to allow him to demonstrate his leadership and hard work for six years within the cities of Tampa and St. Charlotte, Florida. Florida is where Father O’Sullivan first discovered and became a member of the NAACP.

The year 1976, the 200th birthday of the United States, also marked the year Father O’Sullivan was called to the state of Idaho. In Idaho, he continued to deliver God’s word in the towns of Arco, Salmon, and Emmett. He moved to Boise and became a member of our local branch of the NAACP in 1989. Father O’Sullivan retired from his formal church duties in 1998.

From 1989 to the present, Father O’Sullivan has been a civil rights force in the Treasure Valley and throughout the state of Idaho. He has served as an Executive Committee

Jean Terra

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Jean Terra was born in Chatham, Ontario, Canada, on May 1, 1931. With her three younger sisters, she grew up and went to school in Detroit, Michigan. Her father was a lifetime member of the United Auto Workers (UAW) and her mother was a former legal secretary and a homemaker.

Jean came to Idaho in the winter of 1955 and went to work at the Sun Valley Resort. She married and made her home in Ketchum where she lived with her five children. A strong advocate of civil rights and human rights, she was active in Democratic Party politics from the late 1950s. She served on the Blaine County Central Committee and on the State Central Committee, continuing her active support of human rights and equal opportunity and her opposition to the passage of an Idaho “Right to Work” law. During this time, she was an at-large member of the NAACP.

In the late 1960s, Jean and another Ketchum parent, brought their own children and several other children to Boise to participate in the first-ever civil rights march and demonstration on the steps of the State Capitol.

In 1977, Jean joined the staff of Governor John V. Evans. As one of her assignments, in accordance with Governor Evans’ commitment to increase the number of women and members of minority groups on state boards and commissions, she actively researched and sought out potential candidates for these appointments.

In 1981, she was appointed to the position of Press Secretary, the first woman to serve in this position to a governor of Idaho.

In 1999, she was recognized for “outstanding service to the President and the Branch.” Jean now divides her time between Boise, where her two grandsons live, and Ketchum, where her two granddaughters reside. Her commitment to civil rights, human rights, equal opportunity and justice for all remains strong and unabated.

For the past sixteen years, Jean has been an active member of the Treasure Valley Branch of the NAACP. She is a past member of the Executive Committee and a past Branch Secretary. She worked with other NAACP members to make Martin Luther King, Jr.’s birthday and “Juneteenth” statewide holidays.

2005

Mayor Joe B. McNeal

PhotoJoe B. McNeal was born on November 4, 1936, in Ossining, New York. He was educated in Schenectady, New York and graduated from Nott Terrance High School. Joe studied business management, physiology and rehabilitation practices for persons with retardation in college.

Mr. McNeal served in the United States Air Force from February 1955 through February 1981, giving over 26 years of dedicated service to his country. He was stationed at Mountain Home Air Base in 1975, where he finished his military career and retired, with his wife of 48 years, Mildred. The McNeal’s are blessed with 5 children and 7 grandchildren.

In 1980, Mr. McNeal established and opened the famous Joe-B-Q Restaurant in Mountain Home, which was not only known for its amazing ribs, but more importantly for it’s open doors to serving everyone, especially the homeless and those less fortunate, at no cost.

Mr. McNeal’s community service and involved increased when he became the Executive Director for High Reachers Employment and Training Inc. He was instrumental in the merger between High Reachers and the Association for Retarded Citizens (ARC) in Elmore County. The ARC is a national organization chartered to serve people with mental and physical disabilities, and is committed to securing those individuals the opportunity to choose and realize their goals. Mr. McNeal served as the Director of Community Affairs for the ARC for 10 years.

Under the Prince Hall affiliated masons, Mr. McNeal is a past Master, Potentate, High Priest and 33 Degree Mason. Numerous honors and recognitions include: inductee into the Golden Key International Honor Society-honorary member, BSU Chapter; KICI Channel 2 Community Service Advisory Board; USAF Commendation Medal with one Bronze Oak Leaf Cluster; USAF Outstanding Unit Award Ribbon with three Oak Leaf Clusters; Army Good Conduct Medal with one Bronze Oak Leaf Cluster; National Defense Service Medal; Vietnam Service Metal with Two Bronze Stars.

Mr. McNeal has also served his community by running for and holding political office. Serving for eight years, Mr. McNeal was the first African-American elected to the Mountain Home City Council in 1987.

Setting a new precedent for the State of Idaho, Mr. McNeal was also the first African American to serve in both houses of the Idaho legislator. In addition, Mr. McNeal was appointed by then Governor Phillip Batt to serve on the Governor’s Affordable Housing Advisory Task Force. On the invitation from Senator Michael Crapo, Joe attended the African American Leadership Summit in 2003.

Breaking new ground is trademark for Mr. McNeal. To date his greatest political achievement is also another first for the State of Idaho. As the first elected African American mayor in Idaho, Mayor McNeal took his oath, January 12, 2004. His life is inspirational–leading by example, he motivates and encourages all.

Mildred F. McNeal

PhotoMildred F. McNeal was born in Henderson, North Carolina and now resides in Mountain Home, ID with her husband, Mayor Joe B. McNeal. She takes great delight in her children and grandchildren.

On April 20, 2005, Mildred completed her 30th year as a Civil Service Employee supporting the United Sates Air Force and the residents of Idaho. She is presently employed as a Transportation/Travel Manager and Quality Assurance Evaluator at Mountain Home Air Force Base in the 366th Logistics Readiness Squadron, Traffic Management Flight.

Mildred has specialized training in Traffic Management, completed Marketing Training School, and attended Boise State University studying Liberal Arts and Science. She continues to seek self-improvement taking courses offered by Career Track, on-line training courses studying human resources, management, leadership, and communications. Mrs. McNeal as a “Master Gardner” from the University of Idaho, Elmore County Extension Institute.

Mrs. McNeal has been the recipient of many awards including the Air Combat Command Transportation Professional of the year 1991, 2001, and 2002; ACC Transportation Civilian/Professional of the year, 1996, 1997, 2000, 2003; State of Idaho Military division recognition for her service during Desert Storm, 1993; Mountain Home Community Black History Committee Person of the Year, 1993; Elmore Historical Society as “Women of the Present” March, 2003.

Mildred has literally traveled all over the world as a military spouse. She has traveled through every state in the United States of America and her travels abroad includes the Philippines, Guam, Canada, Mexico, Jamaica, and the Bahamas.

Mrs. McNeal is actively involved in the community. She is a member of the First Congregational Church where she served on the deaconate board for six years and one year as the deaconate chairperson. Presently, she serves as the Vice President of Elmore Memorial Hospital Auxiliary where she is responsible for public affairs. She also serves on the Elmore Medical Center Building and Planning Committee. Mildred is President, Preceptor Sigma Chapter of Beta Sigma Sorority.

Mildred has a diverse background in human relations and various cultures. She has earned and is truly a part of Mountain Home History as the First Black to be elected and serve as: President of Idaho Federation of Business and Professional Women and elected twice as queen and is presently serving her third term as president of a Beta Sigma Phi Chapter in Elmore County. Mildred is also a past Grand Worthy Matron of the Order of the Eastern Star of Oregon and its Jurisdiction. (PHA)

Notably, Mrs. McNeal is the President and co-founder of the Mountain Home Community Black History Committee. Mildred has promoted the fellowship of all races and ethnicities. She has a strong belief in the committee’s slogan, “Progress through Knowledge” and with knowledge we all can grow and learn to have more compassion and understanding for one another. Mrs. McNeal witnesses to all, quietly determined to make this a better country and world for everyone.

Dr. H. Lincoln Oliver, Ph. D., B.D.

PhotoPastor Oliver is the first of five children born to the late Reverend J. Lincoln Oliver and Mrs. Mary Martha (Rockley) Oliver in Savannah, Georgia. His siblings include James Oliver and sisters Florence Oliver, Helen Oliver (deceased) and Dorothy Oliver.

Dr. Oliver is married to Dr. Mamie O. Oliver.

Dr. Oliver’s family left Savannah when he was seven years old and finally settled in Los Angeles. CA; where he received his secondary education. At a young age, he attended what was then Alabama State Teachers College. It was during the early days of his studies that he decided upon the United States Marine Corp. Dr. Oliver was among the first of his race to enter the Corp. He served in the Pacific Theater during World War II.

Returning home after his discharge from the Corp, he attempted many vocations from the common labor to what ever turned up that appealed to him–boxing was one. He excelled and was successfully reached the semifinalist card on the Jersey Joe Walcott verses Elmer (Violent) Ray heavyweight boxing match in March 1947. His boxing, which grew out of involvement with the Boy’s Club of America and the Golden Gloves in his boyhood days, began to be less important in his life. “I began to feel the call of God in my life”, Dr. Oliver reports.

Having accepted the Christ as his Savior at age 18, he formally answered the call to the gospel ministry at the age of 24 and was ordained in 1951. He has ministered in the states of California, Washington, Idaho, Utah, Wyoming, Missouri, Illinois and Rhode Island. Dr. Oliver pastored Washington Memorial Church in Los Angeles, St. Paul Baptist Church in Boise, Idaho and Olney Street Baptist church in Providence, R.I. After fifty years of ordained ministry he retired due to poor health.

Dr. Oliver holds a Bachelor’s degree with double majors, Bible studies and philosophy. He has also earned a Master of Arts degrees in elementary/secondary education and English, and holds the Master’s equivalent in philosophy. Additionally, Dr. Oliver has a Bachelor of Divinity, a graduate degree of Doctor of Philosophy. Interestingly enough Dr. Oliver’s doctoral thesis on the history of Boise State University was a valuable contributions to the long history of Boise StateUniversity. He taught at the secondary and college levels and was a lecturer in teacher education.

During his time in Boise, Idaho, Dr. Oliver has served as coordinator for the Fund of Renewal sponsored by the American Baptist Churches USA and was appointed to several boards, councils and task forces by Governor Cecil Andrus and Governor John Evans. Dr. Oliver also served on the Labor Board of the State of Idaho, the Council on Aging, and the task force for the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. birthday recognition and celebration.

Dr. Oliver has also been involved with a number of outreach programs. He founded the OIC of Idaho and The Treasure Valley Council for Church and Social Action. In these programs, services were designed to aid the elderly, children and families, the homeless, the hungry, the undereducated and the unemployed. Under the umbrella of National Baptist Convention USA, Dr. Oliver served as moderator for the Intermountain General Baptist Association. This association was operative in the states of Idaho, Utah and Wyoming.

Dr. Oliver is a member of Phi Delta Kappa, an honorary member of Phi Beta Kappa, the Minister’s Council of American Baptist Churches USA, the International Reading Association, American Association of Christian Counselors, the American Academy of Ministry and past member of American Association of University Professors. The community has been enriched by his many contributions.

Dr. Mamie O. Oliver, Ph. D.

PhotoDr. Mamie O. Oliver was born in Natchez, Mississippi. She has one sister, Ernestine Mcknight. Dr. Oliver is the mother of two adult children and two grandchildren; Sharon Yvette Poston and Jon Kingsley Oliver, Dante’ James Oliver and Ariana Kathryn Oliver.

Dr. Oliver is a graduate of Los Angeles State University, (BA) holds a Master of Social Work (MSW) from Fresno State University and a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) from Washington State University. As a full tenured Professor of Social Work, she has never been content to keep within the confines of any one discipline. Her interests are diverse and over the last three decades of professional service, she has worked in such fields of teaching, social work, community organizations, program evaluation, public relations, grant writing and counseling. She is an ordained Baptist minister, Author and Licensed Social Work practitioner. A portion of her cultural history is expressed in her love and performance of music in the Black tradition.

Dr. Oliver, with her husband, founded the Treasure Valley Council for Church and Social Action TVCCSA, Inc.-Community Ministries Center 25 years ago to meet the diverse needs of those less fortunate in our community. Dr. Oliver is also the first woman to sit on the ministerial staff at St. Paul Baptist Church in Boise.

Dr. Oliver has been recognized as a Distinguished Citizen by The Idaho Statesman and honored by the Boise, ID March of Dimes as one of the ten Outstanding Women in Idaho. She also received the Jefferson Award for Outstanding Public Service Benefiting Local Communities by the American Institute for Public Services. Dr. Oliver was the recipient of the 2004 Women of Today and Tomorrow Award from the Girl Scouts of Silver Sage Council (Boise).

During Dr. Oliver’s stay in Idaho, she has been appointed by two governors. Governor Evans appointed her to chair the first Martin Luther King, Jr. Task Force and Governor Kempthorne appointed her to serve two terms on the Governor’s Coordinating Council for Families and Children.

The history of Afro-Americans in Idaho owes its early development to Dr. Oliver’s work. She and her students completed the foundational research while she was teaching at Boise State University from 1972-1988. While her husband was the pastor of St. Paul Baptist Church 1972-1988, she was instrumental in getting the St. Paul Baptist Church building on the Historical Register. This structure is now the home of the Idaho Black History Museum.

Since 1972, Dr. Oliver has authored one book, three pamphlets, and one presentation (recorded) on historical and cultural issues of Afro-Americans in Idaho. The Journal of African American History (JAAH) recently accepted for publication in its Winter 2006 issue her manuscript “Idaho Ebony: The African American Presence in Idaho State History.”

Dr. Oliver is currently teaching at Northwest Nazarene University in Nampa, Idaho. She continues to write about culture, injustice, and healing of communities. Dr. Oliver encourages all Idahoans to see Black American people as part of the history of Idaho and part of what all humanity is.