Claflin University Hats and Gloves Tea to Empower Women, Honor Rep. Gilda Cobb-Hunter

Mar 06, 2014

Nothing says spring in Orangeburg like Claflin University’s annual First Lady’s Hats and Gloves Tea.

The Tea – set to begin at 6 p.m. Tuesday, March 18, in the Tullis Arena of the Jonas T. Kennedy Health and Physical Education Center – celebrates sisterhood through scholarship, fellowship and community service. Tickets are $50 per person and $500 for a table of 10. Proceeds benefit the Alice Carson Tisdale Scholarship, which is awarded annually at the Tea.

“Each year, I am more and more amazed by the amount of community support we have for the Tea. It has truly become a community event for women,” said Alice Carson Tisdale, first lady of Claflin University. “All of the women in their hats and gloves of all shapes and colors is really something to behold. The best thing about it is that we are able to provide scholarships to deserving students.”

Tickets are still available. To purchase tickets or a table, call Tonyetta McDaniel at 803-535-5307 or visit Guests are asked to RSVP no later than Tuesday, March 11.

The event, held during Women’s History Month, also honors an outstanding community woman as its Visionary Award recipient. This year’s honoree is Representative Gilda Cobb-Hunter, the first African-American woman in Orangeburg County to be elected to a statewide office, when, on January 28, 1992, she was elected to the South Carolina House of Representatives. She is widely respected on both sides of the aisle and has been dubbed “the conscience of the House.”

Cobb-Hunter is also the executive director of CASA/Family Systems, a family violence agency serving residents of Orangeburg, Bamberg and Calhoun counties. She has worked on the national, regional and state levels on a variety of progressive issues aimed at making communities a better place for working families to live.

“Each year, we recognize a woman in our community who is making an influential and significant impact through service projects, philanthropy, creating awareness and consciousness of women’s issues, promoting education, advancing economic development, and has shown courage and leadership for social justice and human rights,” Tisdale said. “Through her work, Mrs. Cobb-Hunter embodies all of these traits and is deserving of this award.”

Special entertainment for the evening will be provided by Annette Dees Grevious, associate professor of speech and drama at Claflin. Grevious will transform herself into notable historical figure Sojourner Truth, inviting the audience to take a journey with music and dance from the Middle Passage, into slavery and beyond emancipation to engage in an enriching conversation as Truth shares her thoughts about race relations, gender equity, freedom, and civil and equal rights for all.

For more information about The First Lady’s Hats and Gloves Tea, contact Charlene Slaughter at 803-535-5077 or

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