In observance of African American History Month, PJM employees volunteered to gather and share information about their personal heroes. Here’s what they had to say:
John Hadrick, senior telecommunications analyst – Telecom Infrastructure
Hadrick shared how his older brother, banking industry innovator James William Wright (1943-2010), was a positive influence on him. He said, “My father died when I was 19 years old. At that time I didn’t need or consider anyone else a possible role model. Fortunately I had older siblings to help fill that void.”
Hadrick provided the following summary about his brother.
Wright worked in the banking industry for over 40 years. From 1981 to 1990, he served as president and CEO of Beneficial National Bank in Wilmington, De. During this time, he was one of only two African Americans to serve as president and CEO of majority owned financial institutions in this country. In 1991, Wright decided to pursue a dream of owning his own bank. Joined by three other investors, he purchased what was then known as the Tuskegee Federal Savings and Loan Association. It was the oldest continually operating minority financial institution in the United States, created in 1894 by Booker T. Washington on the campus of what was then Tuskegee Institute (now Tuskegee University) located in Tuskegee, Ala.
Wright changed the bank name and created a full service state chartered commercial bank. As president and CEO of what is now First Tuskegee Bank in Tuskegee, Ala., Wright transformed the bank into one of the fastest growing and most profitable financial institutions in the state. The bank also received national attention and is consistently ranked among the top 25 minority owned financial institutions in the country.
Now, over 20 years later, First Tuskegee Bank is still thriving led by Wright’s son Neill S. Wright who is currently chairman, president and CEO.
Jacqulynn Hugee, assistant general counsel – Office of General Counsel
Hugee counts Wilma Rudolph – the first American woman to win three gold medals in track and field events at the Olympics – among those who have been a positive influence on her.
“Wilma Rudolph is one of my heroes because she taught me that there are no impediments that I can’t overcome and that if I work hard I can achieve my goals,” Hugee said. “In my view, she was the epitome of courage, determination, dedication, strength and perseverance.”
Look for additional postings from more PJM employees throughout the month.