On January 21, NAACP leadership met to install the next generation of leadership. At that meeting, Dr. Celeste Didlick-Davis, PhD assumed her new role as President of the Middletown Chapter of the NAACP.
In a discussion with Dr. Didlick-Davis, she explained her reason for wanting the job. She said she had the opportunity to take a greater leadership role in the organization about 2 years ago and didn’t not take it. But she could not ignore the need for leadership in today’s organization and believes the time is right for her to lead the chapter. Didlick-Davis feels communication and trust are imperative for success and she is committed to bringing these skills to her role.
Dr. Didlick-Davis said her immediate goals were to increase membership and activity engagement. Although the pandemic has curtailed some activities, in a way, it’s allowed members to engage more frequently because it fits into a schedule better. People can attend a meeting in the comfort of their home and stay engaged to what the organization’s goals are. Of course, it still curtails some of the activities Dr. Didlick-Davis sees in their future.
Forming partnerships to improve relationships in the community is one of the items at the top of her list. “The NAACP is not a black organization. It is about power and inclusion. It needs the community working together to meet the challenges we have here in Middletown,” Didlick-Davis said.
Bringing in younger people will be a key goal as well. Dr. Didlick-Davis has a long history of commitment to youth. As an educator at Miami University, she understands the strength and power young people have in building our future. A focus on education, including STEM, skill trades, mentoring, economic equality and bridging any soft skill deficits are a key to building confidence and entrepreneurship for future leaders in the Middletown community. Dr. Didlick-Davis also credits the Black Lives Matter movement for increasing motivation to address economic inequities as well. Listening to younger citizens, what they care about and what their concerns are will help guide the Chapter as well.
The following Middletown leaders also assumed their new positions in January. First Vice President, Jennifer Carter; Second Vice President, Jonda Prather; Secretary, Karen Moore; Treasurer, Paul Gomia; Assistant Secretary, Gracie Gregory; Assistant Treasurer, Cheryl Maxwell. Committee Chairs: Membership Chair, Wanda Glover; Housing & Criminal Justice Chair, Tammy Thompson; Education & Economic Empowerment, Rev. Jelani Johnson; Political Action Chair, Marc Morgan; and Community Chair, Cecelia Snow Thompson.
To become a member of the Middletown Chapter of the NAACP, you can request an application and send your membership fee to their offices at 1224 Elm St., Middletown OH or message the organization on their Facebook Page.