I was born and reared in Selma, AL. Graduated Alabama Lutheran Academy high school. I attended a two year college program at Selma University (SU), a bible college. While there I participated in the Civil Rights Movement. I left Selma in 1964 after graduating from SU to start a career in the federal government, Washington, D.C.
After leaving Selma, I continued my involvement in the civil rights movement in Washington, D.C. With a burning desire to help bring about change, I used my positions to help individuals rise out of dead end jobs and receive promotions by showing them how to take specific courses to help them qualify for promotions and by showing them how to correctly complete applications for promotions.
For a brief period (1969-1970) I left the federal government to work as Assistant to the Director of the Citizens Board of Inquiry into Health Services for Americans, Washington, D.C. We conducted research into hunger and health care across the United States. This study resulted in a CBS special entitled “Health Crisis in America.”
In 1972, I returned to school fulltime. I left Washington, D.C. to attend school at Tuskegee University, Tuskegee, Alabama. In 1973, I received a BA in Business Administration. In January 1973, I got married and instead of returning to Washington, D.C. as I had planned, we moved to Atlanta, GA because it was good for his career. He is an architect and Atlanta had begun to grow. I went back to the federal government with the Internal Revenue Service were I an swered taxpayer questions by telephone. This position was rewarding to me because it satisfied my desire to help people. This was short lived. I was promoted to Revenue Officer. This position was not as satisfying. However, I did use this position to help a few people I felt were treated unjustly with collection practices. There were so many rules and regulations, my hands were tied and I could only do so much. What I witnessed here was so heart breaking, I left as soon as I could.
I Served thirty three (33) years in the federal government with various agencies and in various cities of the US. Twenty (20) of these years were in federal law enforcement. In 2001, I retired as Assistant Special Agent in Charge, Housing and Urban Development, Office of Inspector General, Atlanta,GA. In this position, I was responsible for day to day supervision of federal agents in Alabama, Florida, Mississippi, and South Carolina. The position required in depth knowledge of the housing and mortgage industry. The priority focus of investigations were on mortgage fraud and drug activity within housing developments.
While working, I continued my involvement within the community and be cause of my support of the arts, in 2004, Georgia’s Governor Sunny Perdue appointed me to the Advisory Board of the Georgia Council of the Arts (GCA). I served on the Board from 2004-2013. In my position on the GCA Advisory Board, I took the opportunity to bring attention to minority arts groups when they might not have been so well known to assure they were considered during the ranking process for consideration of grants.
I am a 2002 Graduate of Coverdell Leadership Institute, founded by Senator Paul Coverdell to build a farm team to work with leaders, training them in the practical aspects of politics and government service to ensure that there would be a bipartisan presence among Georgia elected officials.
August 2014, awarded Honorary Doctorate in Humane Letters, CICA International University & Seminary. September 2014, appointed as Secretary, Global Opus Dei University and Seminary-GODS University. Member World Changers Ministries; member Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.; 2000-2013, Vice Chair, 5th Congressional District, Georgia Republican Party; and volunteer with Mosaic Advisors, teaching youth financial principles.
I have one daughter, Rashida Winfrey and one granddaughter, Ryan Winfrey.