Former NAACP head elected to new post

October 20, 1999|By Erin Texeira | Erin Texeira,SUN STAFF

The former president of the Baltimore County NAACP, who was barred from running for office in the chapter, has been elected first vice president of the branch, NAACP officials said yesterday.

Patricia Cook-Ferguson, a Baltimore County educator, was elected to the second-in-charge position Monday by the branch's executive committee, which includes Anthony S. Fugett, the new branch president.

Some questioned whether the selection of Cook-Ferguson was the best move for a branch that underwent months of leadership turmoil and intervention by the national office of the Baltimore-based National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.

Others said her experience and concern for the branch made her a good choice.

Ella White Campbell, a Stevenswood resident, said, "It's a very smart move."

In March, national officials determined that Cook-Ferguson -- elected president in November -- was not a dues-paying member, and ordered a new election of branch officers.

Cook-Ferguson contested the decision, challenging NAACP rules in Baltimore County Circuit Court in May. A judge upheld the NAACP's decision.

In June, three members of the national board held a fact-finding hearing about problems in the branch. Branch members complained of irregular, unpublicized meetings, unresponsiveness by branch officials and sloppy recordkeeping.

As a result, the next month, the national board considered disbanding the branch. It ultimately salvaged the branch but appointed an independent administrator -- national board member Richard Burton Sr. -- to oversee its functions for an undetermined amount of time.

Cook-Ferguson did not return phone calls yesterday.

Pub Date: 10/20/99

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