Wednesday, November 12, 2008
Brother Kelly Hooper of Robbinsville 672.. Class A Certified Lecturer for 58 years!
The following was written by DDGM Jim Hyde.
Recently Brother Kelley Hooper was given a surprise honor at Robbinsville Lodge # 672 for his dedicated service as the longest serving Certified Lecturer in the history of the North Carolina Grand Lodge. Brother Hooper has remained certified for 58 years.
Brother Mack Sigmon, Secretary of the Board of Custodians was present to present Brother Hooper with a framed certificate, read a history of Brother Hooper’s accomplishments and read a letter to Brother Hooper from Grand Master Cash. Also present to honor Brother Hooper were the Masters and brothers from Andrews # 529, Clay # 301, Marble #439, and Montgomery # 426, and brothers from Indiana and Wisconsin.
At 88 years old not only is Brother Hooper the longest serving Certified Lecturer, he proved to everyone present that he was still able to hear and correct mistakes, as demonstrated when he pointed out that during the opening ritual the word “this” was used when it should have actually have been “a” in one particular statement.
Brother Hooper actually became certified the same year as the first District Deputy Grand Lectures began in 1950. The certified lecturer program had stated only 9 years earlier, in 1941. He has served as the DDGL on four occasions under three different district numbering systems, the 43rd, 58th, and 65th. His tenure as DDGL lasted for 12 years.
Not only has he given countless lectures, schools of instruction, assisted newly made brothers witch catechisms, he has helped more than one brother take that dedicated step of also becoming a Certified Lecturer; Brothers such as the beloved late Doc Little, and our current District Deputy Grand Lecturer Jack Long.
Accomplishments of Brother Hooper:
In 2000 he became the 2nd individual to reach the 50 year milestone of being certified, and is only 1 of 10 individuals to accomplish this feat. Of those 10 individuals, only the first nine have served without a break in service.
Only one other brother, Brother Willie P. Goodman of Unanimity Lodge # 7 has ever reached 58 years. Brother Hooper was certified in March of 1950, and Brother Goodman the following September.
DDGL 1956-59; 1972-75; 1978-81; 1989-92
He has served as Master of Robbinsville Lodge # 672 on four separate occasions.
Has been a Deacon at New Hope Baptist Church in Robbinsville for over 50 years.