Former board member of GCSRW Cynthia Bond Hopson has written
a book celebrating her women mentors and role models from her
hometown in Tennessee.
The Women of Haywood, Their Lives, Our Legacy is about four
professional African American women in Haywood County and is the
seventh book by Hopson, a Haywood County native.
Assistant general secretary of the Black College Fund and Ethnic
Concerns, General Board of Higher Education and Ministry, Hopson
includes in her book interviews with Susie Ella Taylor Ashworth, Nola
Walker Bond, Mayme Dell Rives Bowles Dotson and Eva James Davis
Almost 20 years in the making and recently released in Brownsville,
Tenn., The Women of Haywood is now available at Amazon.com.
“These women used their lives and talents to make us and the world
better,” Hopson says. “This book simply tries to chronicle how and
what made them great. I think their stories will tickle and bless your
heart. It is so important to hear and celebrate their voices.”
M. Garlinda Burton, GCSRW general secretary, says, “The stories in
The Women of Haywood are those we seldom see translated into movies and
documentaries, and rarely celebrated by news media. These are the stories of
women, for whom pride in racial identity, good citizenship and the calling by
God and family to leave the world better than they found it were marching
orders for their daily living.
“From the grammar school teacher Dotson, to nurse Ralls, to activist/
entrepreneur Bond, these women used their power, resources, selfrespect
and faith to infuse financial and spiritual wealth in their respective
communities. They served as role models for young women and men in their
lives, embraced the communities’ children as their own, and showed the
world that women from relatively modest means were and continue to be the
legs upon which America stands.
“Particularly for the African-American community, The Women of Haywood is a reminder that those
institutions and values that we most cherish have been built and sustained largely by unsung women who
donated dollars, sold box lunches, taught in modest schoolhouses, fed and nurtured people in mom-and-pop
restaurants and storefronts, and prayed new roofs onto sanctuaries.
“The lesson from The Women of Haywood is that strong will, mother wit, self-respect, community spirit and
an unshakeable faith in God combine as an irresistible force for positive change and forward movement for a
family, a neighborhood, a people or the whole planet.”