• 39°

Editorial: DeMarcus led the way

At a time when women were a rarity in politics except as an appendage ó “the wife of” ó Jamima DeMarcus forged her own trail into local government with grit and determination. She had plenty of both.
DeMarcus, who died last week at the age of 85, did not put her name on the China Grove and Rowan County ballots because she yearned to be in the spotlight. Rather, she saw a need in her hometown and her county for smart, progressive leaders, and she stepped up.
DeMarcus was what you might call the complete citizen. Her community involvement went well beyond politics. She devoted hours to many causes, including Girl Scouts, the South Rowan YMCA and state beautification efforts, not to mention her church. She was one of those people who seemed to have more than 24 hours in each day ó yet she was always prepared, always looking ahead.
She did it all with the support and encouragement of husband John, who had a strong role in the community as well. A onetime North Kannapolis police chief, he was long associated with Rowan County law and the China Grove community. John died in 1996 at the age of 76. They were a power couple long before anyone coined the phrase.
It would be nice to say many women have followed in DeMarcus’ footsteps, but that has not exactly been the case. She won election to the Rowan County Board of Commissioners in 1982, and in the 27 years since then only two other women have sat on the commission, Leda Belk and Tina Hall. Not many women aspire to the job. But municipal government is another matter; many town boards have women on them now, and a few have female mayors.
Beverly Perdue might not be governor of North Carolina today if Jamima DeMarcus and other women like her across the state had not braved their way into political office and performed so well. DeMarcus helped move Rowan County and North Carolina forward.

Comments

Comments closed.

Local

City officials differ on how, what information should be released regarding viral K-9 officer video

High School

High school basketball: Carson girls are 3A champions

Lifestyle

High school, college sweethearts marry nearly 50 years later

Local

With jury trials set to resume, impact of COVID-19 on process looms

Legion baseball

Book explores life of Pfeiffer baseball coach Joe Ferebee

Education

Rowan-Salisbury Board of Education to receive update on competency-based education

Business

Biz Roundup: Kannapolis expects to see economic, housing growth continue in 2021

Business

A fixture of downtown Salisbury’s shopping scene, Caniche celebrates 15th anniversary this month

Local

Slate of new officers during local GOP convention; Rev. Jenkins becomes new chair

Landis

Landis officials narrow search for new manager to five candidates; expect decision within a month

Lifestyle

Together at last: High school, college sweethearts marry nearly 50 years later

Education

Rowan-Salisbury Schools sorts out transportation logistics in preparation for full-time return to classes

High School

Photo gallery: Carson goes undefeated, wins 3A state championship

Nation/World

Europe staggers as infectious variants power virus surge

Nation/World

Biden, Democrats prevail as Senate OKs $1.9 trillion virus relief bill

Nation/World

Senate Democrats strike deal on jobless aid, move relief bill closer to approval

News

Duke Life Flight pilot may have shut down wrong engine in fatal crash

News

Two NC counties get to participate in satellite internet pilot for students

Local

PETA protesters gather in front of police department

Coronavirus

UPDATED: Eight new COVID-19 deaths, 203 positives reported in county this week

Crime

Sheriff’s office: Two charged after suitcase of marijuana found in Jeep

Crime

Thomasville officer hospitalized after chase that started in Rowan County

Local

Board of elections discusses upgrading voting machines, making precinct changes

News

Lawmakers finalize how state will spend COVID-19 funds