On March 13, 2009, the Family Alliance of Eastern North Carolina began to organize through the efforts of local mothers. Organizational efforts were led by Tracy Burton, a local wife, mother and businesswoman. On April 10, 2009, the nascent group contacted Jack and Jill of America, Inc. to begin the process of forming a provisional group that would encompass Beaufort, Edgecombe, Greene, Lenoir, Pitt, Nash, Wayne and Wilson counties. The National Executive Board of Jack and Jill of America voted to approve Provisional Group status in July of 2009. The small group that met at Emerge Gallery has become the Family Alliance of Eastern North Carolina launched with the first mother’s meeting held July 17, 2009 at the home of Tracy Burton, where the organization’s name and by-laws were established.
The programming year kicked off Sunday, August 30, 2009 with a Back to School Barbecue at Paramore Park in Greenville, NC where all of the families came together for the first time and celebrated our provisional group success. The children’s groups were named after pirate ships and we set sail with our eyes on the horizon by starting the programming year celebrating our first Carole Robertson Day on September 29, 2009 at the Imperial Center in Rocky Mount.
Other highlights of the 2009-2010 programming year include our children serving as escorts at the 2009 LINKS “White Rose” Luncheon, our first “Brunch with Santa” at Yankee Hall Plantation, MLK celebration that honored Eve and Ray Rogers and a “Senior Prom” for the Golden Living Nursing Center. Under President Burton’s leadership, financial contributions were given to the community through our “Pass the Hat” program.
The 2009‐2010 programming year concluded in Chicago, IL at the 39th Bi‐Annual National Convention of Jack and Jill of America, Inc. July 27 through August 1, 2010, where the conference theme was “Power, Purpose and Pearls: Securing Our Children’s Future.” Clad in pirates gear, President Burton and Program Director Patterson made the presentation at the national convention. At this convention, the FAENC was endorsed by its mentor, Raleigh‐Wake Chapter, and a motion was made by the chapter President Barbara Blackburn to move FAENC from provisional group to provisional chapter status. On July 30, 2010, at 6:30 p.m. Central Standard Time, the Eastern North Carolina Provisional Group along with 6 other provisional groups were elevated to Provisional Chapter status by a unanimous vote.
On September 18, 2010, sixteen (16) mothers of Eastern North Carolina Provisional Chapter were installed at 5:00 p.m. at the Greenville City Hotel and Bistro by National Recording Secretary Allison Copeland and Mid Atlantic Regional Director Pamela Askew.
The Charter Mothers
President – Tracy Burton
Vice-President – Regina Edmonds
Program Director – Mary Patterson
Recording Secretary – Ebony Mitchell
Financial Secretary – Ericka Griffin
Treasurer – Julia Atkins
Parliamentarian – Lisa Overton
Sergeant-at-Arms – Sherry Bullock
In September of 2010 our Program Director Mary Patterson was appointed to Mid-Atlantic Regional Editor, an acknowledgement of her hard work and dedication to the goals and aims of Jack and Jill of America.
The Eastern North Carolina Chapter started the 2010-2011 programming year with the excitement of our installation as a charter chapter. The banquet which followed our installation included recognition from the office of President Obama of community involvement of several of the fathers of our chapter. The day after our installation, we celebrated Carole Robertson Day at Cornerstone Missionary Baptist Church. During that service, Greenville NC Mayor Patt Dunn proclaimed September 19, 2012 as Carole Robertson Day.The decor included 3 live Christmas trees with all the trimmings, table decorations, lights all around, wreaths on the gates, shimmering snowflakes hanging throughout the garden and light posts adorned with beautiful pink, blue and silver ribbons. Our chapter later gathered to sing Christmas carols for the residents and families at this facility.
On May 22, 2011, the Eastern NC Chapter of Jack and Jill of America, Inc. was blessed with thirteen new members who were initiated at the Michels Centers:
We ended the programming year with a celebration of Constance Edmonds, our graduating senior at our Black Family Day event at Emerge Art Gallery in June 2011. The chapter bid a fond farewell to two of our charter mothers as Treasurer Julia Atkins moved to Delaware and Recording Secretary Ebony Mitchell moved to South Carolina.