Friday, February 16, 2018

In Loving Memory of Ms. Phyllis C. Hunter

I need to place images in front of African American girls in order for them to see themselves in the best light. - Phyllis C. Hunter, Founder, Dolls Like Me Museum - Sugar Land, Texas. (Photo from Ms. Hunter's Facebook page)

Sadly, I was informed by private email that Phyllis C. Hunter, founder of the Black Like Me  Museum in Sugar Land, Texas, passed on February 4, 2018.  The reader reminded me that Ms. Hunter's museum was featured on this blog in June 2011.

Hunter was an avid collector of black dolls; but according to the reader, "She was not only known for Barbies (which I collect) but Dolls and Black Americana as a whole (cookie jars, cookbooks, memorabilia of all kinds, stamps, African artifacts, quilts...)"

She combined her love for educating and doll collecting by teaching Black history with her dolls and by founding the Black Like Me Museum where groups could tour the collection.

Beyond her love for Black dolls and Black Americana, Ms. Hunter described herself on Twitter as a "Reading and Literacy Educator.  Author.  Speaker.  Consultant.  Book Lover. Collector of all things African American."

The title of her book, It's Not Complicated!  What I Know For Sure About Helping Our Students of Color Become Successful Readers, aptly describes her passion for educating and promoting literacy in children of color.

According to the blog reader, who knew Ms. Hunter personally,  "I know I am definitely a smarter collector because of her and her passion was contagious!  Also, I was at her home when I went to Texas for the funeral and she had your books with her items.  I took a picture... So she was definitely a FAN of yours! She would always say... READ about what you LOVE and COLLECT and she did just that!"

Reading through the condolences on Ms. Hunter's Facebook page led me to photos of some of her dolls and sentiments left by loving friends:

AKA Barbie used as a lovely table centerpiece
Dolls by Christine Orange

Videos of Ms. Hunter's tireless work to promote literacy can be viewed here.

Rest in perfect peace, Ms. Hunter; your work here was well done.


Read the article that inspired my original post about Ms. Hunter's Black Like Me Museum here.

(Thank you, Ms. Jefferson, for informing me of Ms. Hunter's demise.)

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