Annual Luncheon and Meeting with the Honorable Shirley Clarke Franklin

Reflections: 2017 Annual Meeting Luncheon: Educate a Girl, Change the World

Alumnae and invited guests attended the 128th Annual Business Meeting and Luncheon held April 22nd at the Sheraton Philadelphia Downtown Hotel. The theme, “Educate a Girl: Change the World,” promoted and celebrated the investment in girls’ education.

We gathered and the fellowship was rich

This year, attendees were greeted by a new addition, a spectacular new backdrop giving the luncheon a red-carpet ambiance.

Opening the luncheon were words of praise for our Alma Mater from the Honorable Jim Kenny, Mayor of Philadelphia; Dr. William Hite, Superintendent of the School District of Philadelphia and Joyce Wilkerson, Chair of the School Reform Commission.

After our special guests’ greetings, the business portion of the annual meeting was officially opened. The top order of business was a vote to update our articles of incorporation to comport with current IRS codes. Our sisters overwhelmingly approved the amendment to the articles of incorporation.

Honorable Shirley Clarke Franklin received our warmest welcome

After lunch and networking, the speaker everyone was waiting to hear took to the podium, the Honorable Shirley Clarke Franklin, the 58th mayor of the city of Atlanta, Georgia.
She was elected the first African American woman mayor of a major southern city in 2002 and served two-terms as mayor of Atlanta, Georgia until 2009. During her eight years, the city experienced unprecedented growth.

Named by TIME Magazine one of the five best big-city American mayors. Mayor Franklin was the recipient of the Profile in Courage Award in 2005, issued by the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation. Funny, and self-deprecating, she chided the mistress of ceremonies for reading the litany of her accomplishments saying, “I thought if I walked up to the stage you would stop reading.” She spoke passionately, and without notes, about the seeds of discipline she received at Girls’ High and the passion for learning that was instilled. She reiterated her commitment to education; especially for girls.

Class Reunion Memories

Eight classes had their reunions in conjunction with the luncheon. The classes of June 1952, June 1962, June 1972, June 1978, June 1982, June 1987, June 1992 and January 1963 (Shirley Clarke Franklin’s class) joyfully assembled in meeting rooms before and after the luncheon.

Alumnae shopped for school spirit items and posed for photos at the new “step and repeat” banner. The pop up shop selling AA branded merchandise did brisk business!

Special thanks to our musical accompanist, Mi-Young Kim a 1987 graduate of our Alma Mater.
The event was, once again, a great success, and we hope all participating enjoyed it as much as we did hosting it. We now begin the planning for the 129th Business Meeting and Luncheon.


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