First lady of Livingstone College gets key to the city of Salisbury

Published 12:00 am Friday, May 4, 2018

Livingstone College

SALISBURY — Faleese Moore Jenkins, the first lady of Livingstone College, says it’s hard to pull a surprise on her. But on Monday, she got one of the biggest shockers of her life.

During a sorority luncheon on campus, Salisbury Mayor Al Heggins read a proclamation proclaiming April 30, 2018, as Dr. Faleese Moore Jenkins Annual Sorority Day. After the announcement, Heggins presented Jenkins with a key to the city.

“I am just overwhelmed, humbled, surprised and appreciative that the mayor would think about me to present such a cherishable token,” Jenkins said. “When I travel — and travel abroad — I will tell them about this.”

Awarding keys to the city is at the discretion of the mayor, Heggins said.

“Dr. Faleese Moore Jenkins meets the criteria of someone who does outstanding work, one who is a collaborator and someone who is doing everything to enhance our community and bring different voices together,” she said.

Heggins presented the award with Jenkins’ daughters, attorney Ginger Cartwright and Dr. Lisa Lopez, by her side.

Livingstone President Jimmy R. Jenkins Sr. said he is extremely proud of his wife and the honor bestowed on her.

“She is the wind beneath my wings and is deserving of the accolades for her great service to the Salisbury community and the impact she has on our students,” he said.

The First Lady’s Sorority Luncheon, now in its third year, was started by Terri Stevenson, associate vice president of student affairs at Livingstone College. She enlisted the help of First Lady Jenkins to garner support for the initiative. Jenkins now serves as honorary chairwoman.

Nine historically black Greek letter organizations — known as the Divine Nine — are members of the National Pan-Hellenic Council. Represented at the annual luncheon were four member sororities: Alpha Kappa Alpha, Delta Sigma Theta, Zeta Phi Beta and Sigma Gamma Rho.

Jenkins, who is a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha, told the young scholars at the luncheon that they may represent different sororities, “but we have our common causes, no matter what your colors are. We either stay together as one or fall apart.”

She spoke about the importance of being kind today.

“No matter how hard you try, it’s difficult to forget someone who is kind to you. Some people may mistake your kindness for weakness, but it takes strength to be kind,” she said.

In her remarks, Heggins told the women to use their positions to lift up others. Ask yourselves, “Am I C.U.T.E?” C.U.T.E., she said, is an acronym for courageous, uniquely you (and understanding), talents and enterprising.

After the program, sorority members marched to Blue Bear Plaza on campus to release teal and purple balloons in observance of April as Sexual Assault Awareness Month and to make a donation to the Family Crisis Council of Rowan County.