The Phillis Wheatley Community Center in Greenville will induct Clyde Mayes, John McCarroll, Xanthene Norris and Richard W. Riley into the center’s Hall of Fame at a luncheon event on October 16. The Hall of Fame Champions were selected for their extraordinary leadership and contributions to the community over many years.
Our community has faced challenges over the years, and we would not be where we are today without the hard work and dedication of these four leaders. Each of them has left an indelible mark on our history.
Clyde Mayes will be inducted as the Athletic Champion who led the newly integrated Wade Hampton High School basketball team to back-to-back state championships in the 1970s and later played basketball professionally in the NBA and Europe. Mayes’ leadership at Wade Hampton was the subject of the book The Mighty Generals: A Story of Basketball Championships and Racial Unity in the Deep South.
John McCarroll will be inducted as the Community Champion (posthumous) who served as executive director of the Phillis Wheatley Community Center for 30 years. Under his leadership, the center grew from a $60 budget when he started in 1970 to a $1.8 million budget when he retired in 2001.
Xanthene Norris will be inducted as the Education Champion who earned her master’s degree at Furman University where she was one of the first Black female students. She taught at Sterling High and Greenville High and tutored or mentored several of Greenville’s notable leaders. She was also a civil rights advocate and served for 25 years on the Greenville County Council after her retirement from teaching.
Richard W. Riley, former Governor of South Carolina and United States Secretary of Education, will be inducted as the Public Policy Champion. A staunch advocate for public education, Riley is known for leading the charge on the passage of the Education Improvement Act, one of the most consequential pieces of education reform legislation in South Carolina history.
WYFF News 4 anchor Jane Robelot will emcee the event. The luncheon is open to the public. Tickets are $75.00 and may be purchased on Eventbrite. Call 864-240-4242 for more information.