gail song bantum

blog on identity, leadership, discipleship

advent, black lives, and 25 days of changing the narrative – day #2

if you haven’t read my day #1 post yet, you can catch up here.

there are so many people who have influenced me in various ways throughout my life. i’m so grateful for this advent journey – of sharing some of these beautiful folks with you all.

day 2 – december 1

dr. deloris alexander


“ms. deloris” (as my kids called her) is one of the most generous and big-hearted people i know. and her laugh…makes me smile even as i type this. i met her in durham, nc almost 15 years ago when she joined the choir at the church i served. she always brought my family peaches from georgia and gifts for the boys. but perhaps, one of the most profound memories of my friendship with deloris, was the way she openly navigated her blackness everywhere she went and welcomed me into that space. she was not afraid to engage “experiments” in public spaces…like the MALL! e.g. she would intentionally not wear make-up at times and dress down, inviting me to witness how people were more suspicious of her than when she was put together…. presentation matters for most black folks.

i will always appreciate and cherish our times of listening to gospel music together, sharing about family and talking all things black church. she is truly a gift! dr. deloris alexander is an assistant professor at tuskeegee university, in the departments of biology agricultural and environmental sciences, and pathobiology. she also directs a PhD program in integrative biosciences.


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