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Title: Oral History Interview with Grace Jemison Rohrer, March 16, 1989. Interview C-0069. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007): Electronic Edition.
Author: Rohrer, Grace Jemison, interviewee
Interview conducted by Nasstrom, Kathryn
Funding from the Institute of Museum and Library Services supported the electronic publication of this interview.
Text encoded by Mike Millner
Sound recordings digitized by Aaron Smithers Southern Folklife Collection
First edition, 2006
Size of electronic edition: 124 Kb
Publisher: The University Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Chapel Hill, North Carolina
2006.
© This work is the property of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. It may be used freely by individuals for research, teaching and personal use as long as this statement of availability is included in the text.
The electronic edition is a part of the UNC-Chapel Hill digital library, Documenting the American South.
Languages used in the text: English
Revision history:
2006-00-00, Celine Noel and Wanda Gunther revised TEIHeader and created catalog record for the electronic edition.
2006-12-18, Mike Millner finished TEI-conformant encoding and final proofing.
Source(s):
Title of recording: Oral History Interview with Grace Jemison Rohrer, March 16, 1989. Interview C-0069. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Title of series: Series C. Notable North Carolinians. Southern Oral History Program Collection (C-0069)
Author: Kathryn Nasstrom
Title of transcript: Oral History Interview with Grace Jemison Rohrer, March 16, 1989. Interview C-0069. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Title of series: Series C. Notable North Carolinians. Southern Oral History Program Collection (C-0069)
Author: Grace Jemison Rohrer
Description: 165 Mb
Description: 40 p.
Note: Interview conducted on March 16, 1989, by Kathryn Nasstrom; recorded in Unknown.
Note: Transcribed by Kelly Bruce.
Note: Forms part of: Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007): Series C. Notable North Carolinians, Manuscripts Department, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Note: Original transcript on deposit at the Southern Historical Collection, The Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
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Interview with Grace Jemison Rohrer, March 16, 1989.
Interview C-0069. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Rohrer, Grace Jemison, interviewee


Interview Participants

    GRACE JEMISON ROHRER, interviewee
    KATHRYN NASSTROM, interviewer

[TAPE 1, SIDE A]


Page 1
[START OF TAPE 1, SIDE A]
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
This is Kathy Nasstrom with the Notable North Carolinians Project, interviewing Grace Rohrer on March 16, 1989. Would you tell me first a little bit about your family, where you were born, where you grew up, and a little bit about your family background?
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
My family came from the midwest, from Chicago. Both my mother and father were born in Chicago, and I was, as well as my two brothers. My father worked for Western Electric and was transferred to various places. So we lived for five years in Ohio, moved there when I was eight. Then he was transferred out to New Jersey, and we lived there for a while, and then he was transferred down here to North Carolina, to Winston-Salem. So it was a childhood where I lived in a variety of places, all of which added something to my background. In Ohio we lived with my grandfather, and it was in a small town. We were very free. We lived on the edge of town, and we wandered the woods and the fields and the streams. I look on that as a very rich time. We moved to New Jersey. That had it's contribution. We lived in a bedroom community, outside of New York, but it was like a small town. Everybody knew everybody else, and we made some very close friends. In fact, my mother and father considered the friends they made there probably the closest, other than those that they grew up with, and kept in touch with them.
I had two brothers, one's older and one's younger. My mother was not highly educated, degree-wise, in fact, did not graduate from high school. When she was in ninth

Page 2
grade, she went to work. But she was an avid reader, and came from a family that had a high level of culture. I guess that's how I want to put it. So she had attitudes and approaches to education that were very progressive. My father did finish high school and went on to Lane Technical School, which was sort of a vocational school, like our technical colleges here in North Carolina. But they both had a very strong desire for their children to go on to college. And my mother and father expected me to go just like my brothers did, which, you know, [since] I grew up in the '30s and '40s, that wasn't always the case. But the reason, as my mother said often, [was] so I would have something to fall back on if something should happen to my husband, because it was assumed that I'd get married. And I remember a little boy in her Sunday School class, I got married a week after graduation from college, and this little boy said to my mother, "Oh, Mrs. Jemison, what a shame. Now, she'll never be able to pay you back." [laughter] Meaning they'd sent me to college and I needed to work to pay my parents back. And maybe he was ten or eleven years old. But it was unusual. In fact, the pack that I ran around with, the pack of girls, there were two of us that went away to college. One went to New York. She did not board away at college. I was the only one that went away to college. The others went to secretarial school.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
What year was it that you entered college?
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
1942.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
And where did you go, what school?

Page 3
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
I went to Western Maryland College in Westminster, Maryland. My father gave me four colleges to choose from, all Methodist colleges, and I chose Western Maryland just because reading the catalogue it felt good. And that's how we chose the college. My brothers went to Ohio Wesleyan which is another Methodist college, although one brother did not stay there. He transferred to Georgetown.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
Somewhat related to that, when you graduated from college then, what did you think you would do with your life? You say you got married a week later. What kind of plans did you have at that stage?
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
No real plans as far as a career was concerned. I didn't expect to have a career. I did teach for a couple of years until I got pregnant. But it never occurred to me that I would continue to teach. I had a child. I stayed home and took care of the child, which I never regretted. In fact, I never went back to work, expect for a couple of months when I filled in for a teacher, until my youngest child entered kindergarten. I went with him (the youngest) and taught in pre-school.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
Oh, at the school.
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
At the school where he was at. So we went and came home together. And it wasn't until after my husband died that I worked full time. Because that pre-school was just mornings from eight to one.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
How old were you when your husband died?
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
I was forty.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
And then how old were your children at that time?

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GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
Well, Bruce was seven, and Donny was twelve, and David fourteen.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
If you don't mind saying, what impact did your husband's death have on you in terms of what you pictured would happen next in your life and your plans at that stage?
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
Well, what I did was go back to school and get my Masters in history. I decided I wanted to go back to teaching even though in growing up, women's role was very narrow, perceived very narrow. You could be a teacher, a nurse, or a home economist. Those were usually the three things. I was a natural teacher. So that was what I probably would have been regardless of what would have been open. But at that time I had taught third grade and fourth garde and pre-school. I decided I would like to teach at the college level. I have a strong interest in history, and I went back and got my Masters in history. However, in trying to find a job in that, I was not very fortunate. I went to one college—I've never revealed the name of this college, but it was Guilford College, a Quaker college in Greensboro—to explore the possibilities of getting work there, and they said they'd never hired a woman in their history department and probably I wouldn't stand much of a chance.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
What year was this?
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
That was '69. I graduated right after that, and I went home and told my father this. And he was flabbergasted. He may have, you know, at one time felt that women's roles should be limited, I don't know. But I was very special to my father, and

Page 5
to think that somebody would turn down his daughter because she was a woman just had never, you know, it just floored him. He said, "Well, maybe you'll have a better chance at Wake Forest." That's where I went and got my Masters at Wake Forest. But on graduation, we looked at the faculty sitting out there, and probably not even a third of the faculty were women, and he said afterwards, "I guess you wouldn't do any better there."
Then, I don't know why or how this happened but a minister came to me, an associate minister of Centenary Methodist Church, and asked me if I would set up a child development center for the church, which is a fancy name for daycare. That was the only thing on the horizon so I did. I put that together and it was very successful. And out of that came an offer to head up Learning Foundations by two members that went to that church. They had seen the work I had done there. This was a program for underachievers.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
Of what age?
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
Any age.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
But younger than high school age?
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
No, I had an ambulance driver come who had such difficulty spelling. And he had all these medical terms he had to write down and so forth. I worked with him in trying to help him break down words and listen to sounds so he could improve that. So we had adults as well as high school. Probably the majority were high school. That's how I got into this Mac Wood School, because a lot of these children were perceptually disabled, and they were not functioning in public schools. The

Page 6
schools weren't geared to help these children, so I set up this school, which ran for about, I wanted to say ten years. I'm not sure if it was quite that long, until the federal law came down that schools had to accommodate both physically and mentally handicapped children within the school situation, and the county schools in Forsyth County—this was in Winston Salem—worked toward bringing in faculty, or teachers, that could work with these learning disabled children.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
And that's into the public school system, is that right?
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
Yes.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
And what year was that law passed, or else, what year was it then implemented in North Carolina?
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
It was in the early seventies. I'm not sure what year it exactly was, because I had gone on to Raleigh. I directed that school for a year or so and then . . . was asked to come to Raleigh by the Governor at that point, Governor Holshouser.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
Right. Actually, and this then gets into, as I was looking at your resume, the start of your political career. So I'd like to stop at this point and ask you to think back on your family background and what had happened up to early 1973 when you went into the Holshouser administration. Is there anything in your background, up to that point, that led you into politics, any person or any event that sparked your interest?
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
In the late fifties, or during the fifties, I had been asked—I'm a musician—and I was asked to conduct a choral

Page 7
group in what was then called Home Demonstration Clubs. This was an organization, it was an extension from Agricultural Extension Program out of N.C. State, and these clubs were developed all over North Carolina for the purpose of educating rural women, although these clubs did occur within cities as well. But our state is predominantly rural and, especially at that point, didn't have any large cities, and the purpose of the music program was to improve the quality of music within churches and the appreciation of music within homes. So all these Demonstration Clubs were organizing choruses within their counties. And I was asked to conduct the Forsyth County Home Demonstration Clubs, and in doing that, we were quite successful, and we won the state contest, and so I began to have contact with people all over the state and was put on the state Music Committee and so forth. In 1958, the Republicans came to me and asked me if I'd run for School Board because they figured with this work behind me, I had developed a constituency, so I agreed . . . You went into it knowing that if you won it would be a miracle because the state was strongly Democratic, and in fact, when you tried to register, the registrars did everything to convince you to register as a Democrat, and in some areas, refused to register Republicans, so that's how bad it was. But I ran along with four other people, because there were five on the School Board, and we were defeated, but we were defeated by people totally unqualified. One woman had not even reached the eighth grade. None of them had any experience. All of the ones that were on our slate had a college degree, except one man, and

Page 8
he had served on the School Committee within his district, so he had been involved with the schools. None of the others had reached college, and one woman had not even gotten through, I think she hadn't gotten through eighth grade, which in my mind, doesn't always say that that's a poor selection because my own mother was that way, and I knew how much she had educated herself. It didn't make any difference that we were more highly qualified, all had had experience within education. I had taught, one man had been a principal, and so forth and so on, and I thought, you know, "That's not right." And I began to think I needed to work towards making this more of a two-party state so that there would be some competition and the best people would get in. So I went out to my precinct meeting after that.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
So we're still in 1958 here?
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
Yes. In 1960 I was precinct chair . . . and worked my tail off. We called on about a thousand homes within that, handing out literature on people, and it was a Presidential election, of course, that year and Forsyth County, our Mt. Tabor district, precinct, I should say, went Republican, for the first time, and then I was on the county committee as precinct Chair. I was on the county committee, and one thing led to another, and in '64, the Party came back and asked me if I would run for County Commissioner. Well, my husband was not doing at all well at that point, and I refused, and they said, "Would your father be interested in running for the House?" I said, "Well, let's go ask him." So we did, and he just jumped right at it, and years later, after he died, I found . . . I went through his papers,

Page 9
and in it, I discovered that he had, as a young man, back in the 20s, had wanted to get in politics and did get into some political causes that he worked for, but he had a family, and he didn't feel that he could. So at this point, he was retired. He ran and he lost the first time, but he won the next three sessions.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
And so he was a Representative from what district?
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
Forsyth County.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
This is interesting to me because I've heard people say that when Holshouser was elected in '72, that marked the time when North Carolina could be characterized as a two-party state. I suppose I should start by asking would you agree with that assessment?
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
Not really.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
How would you, not so much locate an exact time, but how would you describe the process by which North Carolina became a two-party state?
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
Well, it became one step at a time. Let's see, I think it was in the early sixties. It may have been with the 60s election. Guilford County, which is the county next to Forsyth County, went completely Republican. The problem is, and I was talking about how we had put up qualified candidates, and the other side hadn't, in Guilford County, it was . . . well, let me back up. When you had no hope of winning, and you put up candidates, you get anybody who will put their name on the ballot because you hope maybe there will be some kind of a fluke that somebody will get in. Well, what happened in Guilford County,

Page 10
they filled their slots, but they weren't the best possible people, and they did not have the political experience, really, to know how to utilize that opportunity, and they came into office and went down to Raleigh, and they proceeded to shoot themselves in the foot, so to speak, and it turned back over. But that was the first breakthrough, and then Forsyth County, '66, well, in '64, one man got through, but he got through because his name was opposite a black, and people came down the Democratic side and went over to Ed McKnight, and unfortunately, that was the reason. But that helped the Republicans get their foot in the door. In '66 . . . I think they got three, may have four, but it seems like it was three people to run for the House. They didn't fill the whole five slots. All three of them got in. In fact, all, if we had been able to fill those slots, they would have, and my father was one of them. In '68, we just swept the county, judges and everything else, so it built up, year by year, and Forsyth County is a strong two-party system now. It's been represented by both Democrats and Republicans ever since. That, it began to include Democrats in '70, I think, in '70. Larry Davis got in in '70. He was just one, but at least on the legislative session, spaces, the Democrats began to come in and now it's pretty much evened up. As far as other local races, County Commissioners, we got in, as I said, and judges. And now, even in those races it's pretty much a balanced two-party system. And Guilford County and some of the western counties began to be, Rowan County was another county. But east of that you had it pretty solidly Democrat, until Helms came in. And Helms had been

Page 11
Democrat up until '70 and changed his registration, unfortunately. [Laughter] And brought all the Wallace Democrats with him. And that began a change in the character of the party, because the Piedmont Party, including Charlotte . . . And Charlotte was another area that was developing a strong two-party system. It was moderate. The leaders of that faction were the Broyhills from Lenoir. Old man Broyhill, he financed a lot of what went on in those early years, because there just was no money there. But the east resented them because they felt that he dominated the politics too much. But he was a good moderate Republican. And with the east coming in and with Helms coming in, there were knock-down, drag-out fights within precincts, literally. And it took those of us who were in the moderate part of the party completely by surprise. But they were determined to take over the party. In '76 Helms controlled the party and the governor wasn't even elected delegate to the national convention, because the governor was considered moderate. And we've had that split ever since, although Martin has done a pretty good job of trying to pull that together.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
When I think about what you've said, that a lot of the groundwork for bringing Republicans into local offices was done in, am I right in saying, the very late '50s and through the 1960s.
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
Yes.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
Were many of these local and precinct workers women? What role did women play in that transition?

Page 12
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
I think women played a fairly important part in it. And I can only speak for Forsyth County. No woman achieved county chair at least in Forsyth, although in some of the other counties they did. I ran for vice-chair of the state party and won. And the reason I ran, I ran in 1970, the woman that was vice-chair, the only thing that was important to her was that she be at the head table. She had no vision of what her opportunities were in terms of women. And so I ran, and it surprised people. I wasn't that well known, but the Forsyth delegation, led by my father, lobbied the convention, and I won. And the woman who was Republican national committeewoman was Thelma Rogers, and she pretty much controlled the vice-chair, who was Helen Verbillio, and Helen did what she was told. But Thelma Rogers was a real feminist, although she might not have appreciated that name. She did fight the bias against women within the party, and people hated to see her coming. Well, when I came in, she had no control over me because we had no relationship. And she was very difficult at first until she realized that my goals were the same as hers. Then we became very close partners in this effort to pull women into significance within the party. And she backed me all the time. In fact, there were times that she would come to me and say, "Maybe you can do this. Looks like I can't." And I backed her. She's dead now. But she did a great deal. She and I and Charlie Griffin were the three Republicans that worked very hard for establishing a North Carolina Women's Political Caucus. You're talking about names, Mary Charles Griffin is another person who

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was very active. She's from Asheville. Thelma Rogers was from Charlotte. Charlie is no longer involved, but she was very highly involved in the '60s and '70s and was significant in bringing in Republicans into power in that area.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
It sounds as though, you mentioned, I think your phrase was, "She didn't realize that we had the same goals at that point." What would she have thought your goals were? How would she have thought they differed from what she wanted to accomplish?
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
I can't really answer that. She was struggling so hard within the party [that] to have somebody, my perceptions, to have somebody come in that she could not control and count on, was disturbing to her. And when she found out we were working for the same things, then that threat was lifted. She didn't have to control me. She attacked me at one meeting, one of the first board meetings. As vice-chair I was automatically a delegate on the executive board of the Federation of Republican Women. And boy, did she let me have it. And I just stood up and very calmly said, "Well, this is what I hope to accomplish," and hoped that she would be willing to work with me. And gradually that worked out.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
What would you say you were hoping to accomplish at that point?
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
Well, I encouraged women to run for office. I encouraged them to run for the county chairmanships. In fact, I was pushing so hard that when I would call up a county chair, the first thing he probably would say was, "I'm working on it. I'm

Page 14
trying to get these women to run." I wouldn't even have to open my mouth.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
[Laughter] He knew why you were calling.
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
And I'd say, "Yes, I know you're working very hard at it." It wasn't so much that the men were against it. It was that it had never occurred to them to push women. Or "Do you really want to do that?" That was sort of the impression. Many of the women, they were involved with were in the Federation of Women's Clubs. And I'm sure the Federation has trained a lot of women, as the Democratic Women does, for roles in politics. But I didn't come up through the Federation. I came up through the precinct organization. I came up through the party. My whole approach to politics was lots different than those women. The Federation was more the social club with their hats and their white gloves, and I had gotten my hands pretty dirty, walking the streets and calling on people and running campaigns. And it was trying to remove them from that into the actual function of the party that was my goal. And with the men seeing the Federation as it was, I think there perception was, "Well, these ladies are having their fun. They're not interested in really getting involved." So it was pushing the Federation and pushing the party to bring women into decision making areas of the party. I was chair of the state party for a short time, and at the convention that I reigned over, and all the committees, half of them were women. But I appointed half women and half men, pulling in a lot of women into committees that hadn't been done before. And had I stayed on, and that's another story, I would

Page 15
have had a chance to do more, but at least it opened the door and it said something.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
You mentioned a little earlier the North Carolina Women's Political Caucus, and I think of that as the first time that Democratic and Republican women came together in an organization. But again, that may just have been what I've been told. Is that true, and would you describe that process?
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
It was true. I got a call from Martha McKay, who I hope you're going to interview.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
Yes, she has been interviewed before but I'm interested in speaking with her again, and it's a matter of finding the time to be in Washington for that.
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
I think she's pretty much around here now.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
Okay.
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
Martha McKay called me up and told me what she wanted to do, organize this Women's Political Caucus, and talked to me about where she was coming from. After about a half hour, she said, "I think we're pretty much on the same wave length. Would you join me in this?" And I said, "Yes, I'd be glad to." She said, "Well, I'm also going to call Thelma Rogers." And as I said, Mary Charles Griffin was the other one. Marie Rowe may have been in on that. I think Marie probably was. Donna Yon and Marie were very good friends, both from Charlotte. So there was the four of us, which represented the Republican end of it. They had a meeting in the fall of '71 which I didn't get to. I had been out to Memphis on a political meeting and I came home deathly sick. I don't think I've ever been so sick with a cold

Page 16
and strep throat and all that stuff. And I didn't get to that meeting. But I did get to the ones that followed. Of course, we had the big meeting to pull the women together at Duke in January, a thousand women. That did a lot to elect Jim Holshouser because he was the only major candidate that showed up. The major Democratic candidate sent a letter and said he didn't have time to come, to just read the letter. And they [the women organizing the meeting] refused to read the letter. I went to Holshouser and said, "This is terribly important. You've got to come, and this is what they're going to expect of you." When he got up and saw thousands of women sitting there, he said to them, "You know the first word that comes to mind is fear." [Laughter] And he spoke and they asked him if he would appoint women, qualified women, and he said, "Yes." And he appointed me. I was not the only one, but he also appointed Isabelle Holmes to be Deputy Secretary of Transportation, and Libby Koontz to a major role. I think it had something to do with hunger. So he was gradually doing, this was first governor who had done that. I'm sort of backtracking, but you said did the two-party system start, did it occur with Holshouser. I would say it had its first strong beginning with Holshouser and it improved from that time. I don't think we had a two-party system by any chance, even though Holshouser got in and Helms got in. You still had the majority of counties Democrat. You just had spots here and there.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
Before we get into the Holshouser administration and your work there, which I do want to spend some time on, one last

Page 17
question about the political caucus and then Holshouser's election. Is it too much to say that women played a big part in electing him, and can you relate that to his appearance there?
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
We do feel that it played a part in his election, because the women went out of there . . . They were annoyed at Skipper Bowles. These were women who had influence. They had constituencies. And they went out of there with an attitude, you know, the fact that he [Holshouser] answered all their questions. They couldn't fault him on anything he did, and he stood up there and had the courage as well as the interest to be there. And I think it did have an effect. The other thing that went for him was the fact that Skipper came out of a very wealthy family and was pouring money into the campaign. This is an economical, especially at that time, state in which people were thrifty and careful about their money because they didn't have a whole lot of money. And to see this person trying to buy the governorship, as it was perceived, hurt him. But I think it also hurt him because he did not appear. And most of the women that were there were in the leadership at that time [and] feel the same way, as far as I understand.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
Was Holshouser's appearance at the meeting at Duke in 1971, did he sway very many Democratic women at that point, do you think?
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
Well, there were mostly Democratic women there.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
Do you think they turned around and then voted for him, or is that just too hard to say?

Page 18
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
At that point, and this was in January of '72, the issue was women, and there was a commitment that we were going to vote for those candidates who were either women or men who supported women. And of course, the Equal Rights Amendment was involved in that too and Holshouser had come out to be for it. And we were going to put those things above party. I voted for Democratic women. I worked for Democratic women. I worked for candidates who were going to support the Equal Rights Amendment because that's one of the basic points of establishing the Women's Political Caucus. Jane Patterson probably, or Betty McCain, probably did not. Now, I don't know about Betty. I know Martha McKay worked for me, and she gave me a fund raising party and got in quite a bit of trouble with the Democratic Party because of her support for women over party loyalties. It was loyalty to women. And when you have someone in the leadership like a Martha McKay that is doing this, this influences others. And she invited Democratic women to the party. They weren't Republicans, and they all gave me checks toward it. So this was the kind of thing that was going on at that time. That was saying, I ran in '72. That's why I'm . . .
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
I'm thinking now, and this was something that, as I was imagining talking with you about it, I'm wondering what it was like for you in early 1973. Holshouser was the first Republican governor in seventy-five years or so, is that right?
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
Of this century.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
And you were the first women who was appointed to a cabinet level position in his administration. So there's this

Page 19
transition of a Republican administration coming in and you're a first woman in that position. What was that like for you? Can you describe those first few months in office?
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
Well, the first time I met with my immediate staff, the Division Heads and so forth, the fear that was in their faces was shocking to me. I was just not prepared. I thought "I'm a nice person. Certainly they must be happy to have me in here." They were scared to death, and I said, "I'm not planning on any changes. I don't know enough to make any changes. As I learn the ropes and how things are going, then . . . we will talk and see what changes need to be made in order for you to do your job better and what you need from me and then everything's going to work out." I tried to alleviate that, and that's what I did, and for six months I took, I met with everybody personally. I took notes. They gave me an idea of what their function was and where they were and what their needs were, and I made very few changes as far as replacing people. And Holshouser did not push that. Of course, he had people he wanted to work in, but we were pretty much free to work that out for ourselves. It was different with Martin . . . Then, of course, I had to deal with the Legislature, and when I went in, I went in around the first of January, I forget the exact date. It seems like it was the fifth. Three weeks later the Legislature came to town, and I was to present a budget to them. Well, of course, the budget had been prepared by my predecessor. I tried to get it in my head. It was too late to do anything about that. It was already printed and in the hands of the Legislature. So I had to jump in and deal with the

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Legislature. And they were very kind to me. They sort of patted me on the head and said I was a nice lady. But gradually that stopped. I had a business officer who was as tough as nails. She had been in state government for thirty years.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
And who is that person?
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
Mary Cormick. C-O-R-M-I-C-K. And she knew where the bodies lay. She had her people that got things done, and she knew power and knew how to use power. I learned a great deal from her. In fact, just to keep her under wraps, or under control, I had to learn a lot from her, but if I needed something or if I needed to deal with a Legislator, she could tell me how to deal with him and how to get to him and so forth and so on. And she said to me, "I'm a Democrat." But she said, "I'm loyal to whoever is in this office because that's my job." And we got along great, in fact, we're still good friends and see each other fairly often. I also had an excellent secretary. When somebody would call up and want to see me, she would say, "This is so and so," and give me some background on him, "and he probably wants to see you about this because of this and this and this." So I had good help, and I was able to develop loyalty and good support within the Department, and I moved . . . I'm not a person who jumps in. I'm not impulsive. I study things through and move carefully, and that paid off because when I did move, there was good justification for it and rationale, and it was accepted. So it really turned out that it wasn't as difficult as you might assume, plus the fact that I was so naive about what I was

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getting into. I went in feeling, you know, so what. I can do this. Second time around, I wasn't quite as confident.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
Then you knew. I'm thinking, too, as you've just been talking, we didn't make a note for the transcript that your position was that you were Secretary of the Department of Cultural Resources.
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
Yes.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
I'm curious, too, as you describe this transition. The two people you've mentioned so far, the business manager and your secretary, were women. What was the make-up of your staff and the people that you worked with? And then, how did they respond to having a woman manager?
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
They didn't seem to have any problem with me being a woman.
Within the Department of Cultural Resources you have three Divisions: you have the Division of Libraries, you have the Division of Archives and History, and you have the Division of the Arts—well, I made it into a Division. There were numerous agencies within the Department that dealt with the Arts. You had the Arts Council and the Symphony and the Art Museum and so forth . . . the only person who really had a problem about me was H.G. Jones who was Head of Archives and History. His problem, I don't think, was so much that I was a woman but that I was not a professional in his eyes, although I had a Masters in History. He was so afraid, well, he had lost a great deal of power with the reorganization of state government. He had reported directly to the Governor, and he and Governor Scott were very close. Scott pushed, and Holshouser supported him, the re-

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organization of state government, pulling these three hundred agencies that reported directly to the Governor into nine major Departments, in which the secretaries would then report directly to the Governor.
[END OF TAPE 1, SIDE A]

[TAPE 1, SIDE B]

[START OF TAPE 1, SIDE B]
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
H.G. Jones had said to me that if he perceived that the professionalism was going to be in danger, that he would take a leave of absence and work on the outside. The governor said that if he did that, he was fired, because the governor was strongly for reorganization, and he was not going to have somebody working for him that was going to work against it. So what I did was bring H.G. into the second phrase of the reorganization and let him lay out the professional qualities for that department, and kept him satisfied. Gradually I won him over. One other way I won him over was that I was there at seven o'clock every morning, sometimes beating him. And when he introduced me one time, he said, "She's the first one that has ever been there before I've gotten there. I've been the one who's opened the door." To him that was important. Then I thought, well, that's fine. He realizes I'm sincere, and sometimes I was there on Saturdays, and he was there on Saturdays. Archives and History was his life. So gradually I won over the people, and because they were historians and artists and librarians and so forth, I think there was less concern about the fact about my gender. Because within those professions you had so many women, probably more than in many other professions, and I was pretty much accepted. Every once in a while I would run into some biases, but I felt quite comfortable.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
And your track record in those areas, it seems to me, you had shown a great commitment to education and to the arts. So there certainly, I imagine, wasn't a question about that.

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GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
Yes. I had somebody say to me, "Well, the governor appointed you, but look what he appointed you to, to Cultural Resources. That's a woman's slot." And I said, "No, that's where I was most qualified." Because I had been going off in fifty different directions all my life, and it all came together in that job, my background in the arts, the history. The only thing I didn't have a lot of experience in was libraries, but I'd been a patron of libraries if that's any criteria for choosing.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
That attitude you just mentioned about a department such as Cultural Resources being a natural choice to have a woman administrator in, how widespread would you say that was?
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
That feeling?
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
Right.
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
Oh, I don't know that it was so widespread. It came up once or twice. It had never occurred to me until somebody made the remark.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
Following up a bit on this aspect of women's issues in this administration, because again I've heard it said that Holshouser was good on women's issues, would you say that's true? How would you describe his commitment? What was accomplished in his administration?
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
What was accomplished mostly was the increase in the appointment of women into decision making areas. He came out in his first state of the state address urging the early passage of the Equal Rights Amendment. He became a little lukewarm on it as the tension began to build up, but he never backed off. I think he was surprised by the reaction across the state. Of

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course, it became quite a fight within the legislature. I'm not sure how he stood on other issues because at that point our whole focus was on the passage on the Equal Rights Amendment. It had become a single women's issue. In fact, I think that hurt us because it kept us from getting into other areas that needed to be done. All our energies and our money and everything else was focused on winning that battle.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
Now when you say "we" there, who would you include in that group?
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
Well, mainly the Women's Political Caucus. They were behind all of the organization to get this ratified.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
I'm thinking about how to formulate this question then, because it seems as though, and let me know if I'm putting too much together here, but as you describe this there was the momentum of women in politics on a number of fronts, and then you just mentioned about the ERA started taking up everybody's energy, am I characterizing that right? Did efforts stop on other fronts for women in politics or is that overstating it?
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
Well, there was a great deal of momentum. It's my perception that the momentum came from the fact that we had a single issue in which there was, it brought a lot of women together. Now, at that point you had the silent majority. There were a lot of women out there who were against it, were frightened by it. It was really fear that they had. But they weren't visible in '71 and '72. They did not become visible until, really visible, probably until the fight in '75, although they began to emerge in '73 as we geared up for the legislative

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battle. The only thing out there that was bringing women together was the Caucus. Otherwise, women were fighting within the Democratic Party or the Republican Party. But nobody was pretty much working together. The Caucus brought them together, and the thing that kept them together was the Equal Rights Amendment. But it laid the groundwork for continued cooperative effort on women's issues, and even though other women's issues didn't creep in until late '70s when our last stand failed, which was in the legislative session of '79. At least we had people working together and then we began to move out into other areas. But I would say during the '70s, the Equal Rights Amendment dominated everything. Because then we thought if that got on the books, these other things would fall into place.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
Right. These other things, and then you mentioned earlier women's issues, would you take a minute to outline what those were? What issues emerged in the 1970s in North Carolina as women's issues?
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
Economic: equal pay for equal work. Political: in terms of women being elected to legislative and county seats. We didn't get into abortion. Pretty much we kept that under wraps, although there was movement within for reproductive rights. Even then what was beginning to emerge was daycare, the need for daycare. Child support. Health is now an issue, a big issue, but it wasn't too much then. I'd say mainly the issues were political and economic, although they expanded as we moved toward the National Women's Conference.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
Okay, in 1975 then.

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GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
'77.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
'77, in Houston. Okay, that's interesting. Because now I'm thinking I saw that on your resume, that you went as a North Carolina delegate to Houston. Would you just talk a bit about that. I think that's interesting.
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
Well, I was appointed, as the others were, by President Ford to head up the state committee for the International Women's Year. And we were to have a state meeting, and Libby Koontz, Elizabeth Koontz, was chair of that, and we had our state meeting and elected the delegates to the National Conference, and I was elected to lead that delegation, which I did. I didn't get as much out of the conference as others did because I was taking care of these twenty-some women. (Laughter) I forget how many were in the delegation. It was quite an experience. It was an emotional experience as well as a strong political experience. They had the running of the torch starting from Seneca Falls that ran down to Houston, and Billy Jean King was on the last lap and ran up to it, and that was very exciting. There were twenty-six resolutions that the states had been asked to take action upon, which were then brought to the national convention. Most of the women there were feminists, but you had delegates from, especially the southern states, that were strong anti-feminists. In fact, South Carolina had quite a battle, even men getting involved in their delegate selection. You know, grabbing the mikes away from each other. We got a warning up in North Carolina that some of these people who had tried to disrupt the South Carolina meeting were coming up to disrupt ours. We

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were prepared for anything. I don't know that this happened in other states, but it did happen in several southern states, in which there was a great deal of fear of what was going to happen at that women's conference and an attempt to take over the delegate slots so that their points of view would be presented. And that's fine if that's the way that the state wants it, but it was the way they went around doing it. It was really rather frightening when you saw how desperate they were. So we met in this tremendous hall. I don't know how many women were there, maybe several thousand. The three wives of presidents, Betty Ford, Mrs. Carter, and Mrs. Johnson, were there on the platform. Of course, Bella Abzug was running the thing, and Gloria Steinem was very much involved. Maya Angelo, Gloria Scott, who's now president of Bennett College here, was involved. And we had several day's sessions, going through these twenty-six categories and developing the recommendations that we were going to be taken to President Carter, asking him for support and for these things to be legislatively enacted where necessary or administratively enacted where necessary. So we went through them, and we voted. The abortion issue was the most emotional, and it continues to be, of course. And one thing that interested me in North Carolina was when the abortion issue came up, about half of the delegates voted against it and most of them were black. And I think many times we see that it's the blacks that are pushing for abortion, mainly because of the effort to get money for women on welfare or poor women who need an abortion and can't have it. But that wasn't true. There were a lot of blacks that were

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against abortion. The delegation that sat immediately in front of us was from Utah, and they were Mormons. The Mormon Church had come out against the Equal Rights Amendment, and these women, I don't know that all of them did, when that vote came, stood up for it and the whole place went crazy. [Laughter] It was so emotional, and then they started singing, "We Shall Overcome," and they just rushed over to that delegation and embraced them. Because they had said, "Don't decide what we're going to be for and what we're against. We will decide." And as they supported various things it was obvious that these were very strong women, and they were going to make up their own minds. So you came away with a tremendous feeling of camaraderie, that we were all out there. And even with the women that were there that were trying to disrupt it because their views were different, they were there and they had a right to be there. And maybe they were so frustrated, they don't know how else to do it, and maybe that's the only way they could get their foot in the door, is to just fight as brutally as they could to get into it. And of course, after that they printed all this up and took it to President Carter. And we had a meeting in Washington after that, which disappointed me very much. Because as they voted on the leadership of who should be involved in presenting this and following this up, the women that got it were not the ones that could do it.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
Why was that?
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
Because there was a strong, well, this has to be just my perception because I had watched this unfold. I think

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there's often a resentment against leaders, against the Bella Abzugs and the Gloria Steinems. They're out there. They have all this attention. And you have people in there who are hungry to get involved, and they gang up against them. It was a faction like this that were pushing in women that had no business being in there. Not because there was anything wrong with them, but they did not have the constituency. They did not have the power. They did not have the recognition that would enable them to push for some of these things. And it just sort of fizzled in a way. I think it was picked up, but I saw it fizzling there. This is one thing that I think we as women have to learn, which I think men know, is that we go where the power is and we work with the power that we have. We have to be tough on that. And that means sometimes leaving people out. I'm a member of Women Executives in State Government, and these are women who have been in cabinet level positions. They're women of power, and they have gotten there and they continue to be there because they are tough and they've made the hard decisions. And while they are working for women in many, many ways, women is not the issue. It's staying in and having the clout and the power, because only then can they bring other women into it. And they're not soft on anything, and they say it like it is and they're forcing women to recognize that there's sometimes decisions you have to make that may not be the ones you would like to make but they're the ones that are going to help you survive. And if you survive, then it means that others will survive.

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KATHRYN NASSTROM:
I think now I'd have you say a little bit more about the aftermath of the conference in Houston. You mentioned briefly a meeting in Washington, D.C. afterwards. What was that about and what came out of that?
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
Well, the purpose of that meeting, as I remember it, was to pull everything together in terms of where we were going at this point. So in a sense it was sort of an organizational meeting. After that I was not involved, although the presentation was made to President Carter and the women that were then in the leadership and were responsible for taking this to the Congress . . . And then they had a ten year, a decade, evaluation of it, which I did not get to, in which they looked back to see what had been accomplished. I guess I was disappointed because, and it may have happened, but whoever was carrying this on had really lost contact with the states. So it was difficult to know how far it went. As head of that delegation I should have been constantly informed about the progress of that, and I was not. In fact, I even lost an awareness of who I should contact. It was just, it seemed to be, a breakdown there.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
Okay, this seems like a good time then to shift the focus somewhat back to North Carolina. You say you were not particularly involved at this point. What then did become the focus of your activities, because now I take it we're in the late 1970s, early 1980s. Where did your career take you then?
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
That's when I went back to school to get my Ph.D. I was teaching at Salem College, and I enjoyed that. I enjoyed

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getting back to teaching, and I though this is really where I'd like to be. And the perfect job would be to have an administrative position and do some teaching. I couldn't do that without getting another degree, although it wasn't only my idea. I had met a young woman called Joan True, who was working in research at the University here, Chapel Hill. She came and interviewed me, very much like you're doing, on some research that she was doing. And we began friends and she pushed me. She said, "You ought to go and get your Ph.D." And I hadn't even thought of it until that time, and then as I enjoyed Salem, I thought, "Well, maybe she's right. What have I to lose?" So I did go into that. At that point I was out of politics. I mentioned earlier the division was in the party and the Helms faction coming in and controlling it, and I had no place in that. I became president of the North Carolina Women's Political Caucus in '79, and so stayed in a bi-partisan situation and still worked for women and supported women who were running for office. But I was very careful about who I supported in the party because I was not going to support people who were not moderate. Then I was asked to come and be development director for the UNC Center for Public Television and got very much in that and still continued to teach part-time at Salem, and was still getting my doctorate. So I was pretty much out of politics until '84 when Martin came in and became the major candidate, and I worked for him. Because of the job I had done under Holshouser, I had achieved some credibility. He asked me to come in and be Secretary of the Administration. That was a whole different ballgame than

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Cultural Resources. I was able to put a lot to work that I had been studying in my Ph.D. My Ph.D. was in educational administration and organizational development. So the Department of Administration could almost become a lab. I was interested, as I was the first time around, in developing an environment of trust in which people would be comfortable and would feel comfortable bringing feedback to me that needed to be said. And develop a team approach in which we would all enjoy working together regardless of what the backgrounds were, politically or otherwise. It was not easy, not because people within the department weren't ready for something like that, but Martin had within the governor's office people that were highly political and pushing you to be political. And the governor had announced that he wanted to professionalize state government, and so I took him at his word. But it was an uphill fight, not so much from him, but from people in his office. It was not an enjoyable experience. Also there was a move, which I haven't talked about much, by the deputy secretary to take over the department. He sat down with me and he said, "Now, you just go and do what you enjoy doing best," and he said, "I'll take over and run the department." And I said, "No, you won't." I said to him, "The governor appointed me," and I said, "I didn't bring you in here to run the department. I brought you in here to run the Division of Government Operations." And then he said, "But they told me," and he stopped. I said, "I don't care what they told you." And I knew from then on that my days were numbered because they had evidently, well, I think two things happened. One thing, they

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put me in charge of the most powerful department in the state government. Secondly, I was to be a figurehead so they would look good, you know, having a woman. And Jane Patterson had run it before me, and it was a very uneasy, I was never comfortable. It was an uneasy throne as I think of it, and wondering when the other shoe was to drop. And I thought, "Well, hell, I'm in here. I know this isn't going to last forever. I'll do what I can." And I fought everybody [laughter] to bring in qualified people whether they were Democrats or Republicans. If there were two people out there equally, I would put in a Republican, of course. But I wasn't going to jeopardize what we had to do in order to please some of the people that were down in the governor's office. When I took over, Physical Plant was in disarray because it was the dumping ground. We were responsible for the maintenance and repair of state buildings, and I had to go in there and fire a number of people because they were, one was mayor of Cary and spent most of his time there while the state was paying him to be over here. The other was the county commissioner doing the same thing. They weren't doing their jobs. And I brought in a professional to head up that, and told him to clean it out and get the thing straightened up. He lasted for a year. Meanwhile, he'd done a study and developed a program which we started to implement. We had something to give to the legislature. The University grabbed him up after about a year and a half because he was really tops, which is something that you go through all the time in state government. You can't keep people. And the universities pay better than state government

Page 35
does for some reason. So it was a tremendous learning experience. [laughter] But I experienced discrimination in a way that I had not experienced it before. In time, well, another thing came up. I was a moderate in a conservative administration. Not that the governor is highly conservative. I would say he's a moderate leaning to the right. But he had to get in with the far right supporting him. Here they had this moderate in here, and people evidently were yelling for my scalp. And so it was suggested that I move into the governor's office and take over policy and planning and move out. Well, that was the reason given and I think it was, in a sense, true. But I also knew about the other. And so I said, "Sure." I was glad to get out of it. Stress-wise, it was tremendous, and it was a relief to finally have it come to an end. So I had developed a whole strategic planning for the governor anyhow as Secretary of Administration, and then handed him an agenda that was quite powerful. The only thing, he hadn't used it. He didn't use it effectively. So at that point I decided that I was going to get out, which I did by writing a proposal to Appalachian State University saying [that], "Based on my experience in state government and the problems that were there were because state government was being run predominantly by technocrats whose knowledge was limited. There was an impoverishment of intelligence, imagination, creativity, because the system did not allow that, also because of the narrowness of their experience and training. And I felt what was lacking was a good sound background in the humanities which develops critical thinking,

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which helps to develop balanced judgment, and so forth, and they [ASU] were very interested in it and asked me to come. So I did.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
And that essentially brings you up to what you're involved with today. Would you want to describe that a little bit more, what that program is about?
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
Well, what we hope to do is establish an Appalachian Humanities Institute. We are serving the faculty, students, and the community at large, including the alumnae, developing various seminars and workshops and conferences and so forth. One of the things I'm establishing is a weekend college in which we will have seminars. We will invite people from off the campus to participate. And it's getting thoughtful people around the table to reflect on the power of ideas that comes through the literature, both past and present, and turn those ideas into actions that will deal with the problems that we face daily. Another thing we seek to do is to help people develop balanced judgment on various issues that they're dealing with daily or public policy issues. I'm working with organizations within the University on doing seminars for local government. For instance, within their workshops, doing a two hour seminar on civil disobedience with law enforcement officers and using the "Letter from a Birmingham City Jail" by Martin Luther King, an eloquent and powerful justification for civil disobedience. And law enforcement officers have to deal with that. Not that they wouldn't arrest Martin Luther King, but hopefully would go in with some understanding of what he is trying to do. Therefore, that would affect their attitude and how they treat him. And

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that's what I mean when I say to broaden the breadth of experience and understanding and knowledge. So that in dealing with their problems, they deal with them in as effective a way as possible. Because in that letter King talks about just and unjust laws and makes an eloquent justification of what he is doing. And the letter did convince the nine ministers who had listened to him from Birmingham, most of them, to give these demonstrations. Working with school board on the issue of the canon. This is the issue of cultural literary and closing of the American mind and the whole controversy around that. And let them sit down for two or three days to look at that whole subject, and where they should be as they grapple with this within public schools. Another one we're developing is the "American Experience, Myth and Reality." Next fall we're doing "The Power of the Myth" using Joseph Campbell's work. I don't know it you saw the Bill Moyer's program on "The Power of the Myth." Because our myths dominate our religions, our marriages, our culture. By our myths we develop our moral codes, our morals. So right now our myths have been discredited and we find ourselves without anything out there to believe in, and it's having an effect on society. According to Joseph Campbell, when this happens, disease increases, fights increase, crime increases. So we're trying to get people together to begin to reflect on the issues of the day.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
It does seem that there is a lot of interest now in morals and ethics. You mentioned the Bill Moyers series. I've also been watching the PBS series that's been on on Ethics in

Page 38
America. So it certainly is something on a lot of people's minds now. Do you connect that in any direct or indirect way with your interest in politics? Was there a dovetailing, or do you consider this having stepped off in a new direction?
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
No, I think it's very basic to improving, not only the electorate's perception of their responsibilities, but their judgment as to whom they would support as their candidates. If we could have enough influence so that candidates can sit down and look at present public policy in terms of, I use the word, power of ideas, that are out there, that come from writings of the past and the present and everywhere in between, that would give them some breadth of understanding of what they're dealing with. It's the human condition. Because all of politics is the human condition and how, hopefully, to create an environment in which that condition can find a quality of life that makes it meaningful. So I see what I'm trying to do is to, well, I don't know how else to say it, just broaden the whole spectrum of thought in North Carolina. And I think this is important to democracy. We're going to revitalize this democracy and to continue for it to grow and touch people in a way that it isn't at this point. You know, when you have the Ku Klux Klan on the rise and Nazism on the rise, those are . . .
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
Right. We have just a little bit of time left, and somewhat following up on what you've just been saying, but also thinking about our conversation earlier about, first of all your involvement in the Republican Party. Has that continued? And

Page 39
then on-going interest in women's issues, how do you see that in your work now?
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
Well, I'm still involved pretty much in women's organizations. I'm on the Council of North Carolina Equity. I've gotten out of the Political Caucus because I've really gotten out of politics per se. And I am far more Independent. I consider myself more of an Independent at this point than a Republican because I'm going to, very carefully, and I have for a number of years, looked at the people that I support by my vote and by my money. And I think, at this point in my life, and trying to accomplish what I'm trying to, that's important that I have neither a bias against the Republicans or for them, or against the Democrats or for them. But to be able to be objective and to look at them clearly. I think that if I'm going to deal with people effectively that I do have to be in that realm. I took over the party at one time when the chair decided to become involved in the gubenatorial primary. This was when Holshouser was running. I was for Holshouser but I had pledged neutrality as a vice-chair. But in the first primary neither Gardner nor Holshouser got the 50% of the vote. So they had to have the second primary and Frank Rouse, who was a strong Gardner person, got all upset and he took a leave of absence and went and worked for Gardner and turned the party over to the executive director. So I called a press conference and said I was taking over the party, that the rules of organization said the vice-chair takes over in the absence. I was chair for several months until this was resolved, and Frank came on back at my

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encouraging, although I ran against him because Holshouser insisted upon it. But he could bring in the east. I couldn't bring in the east. At that point I learned to be objective. I had to be because otherwise it would have widened the split. The party was already torn apart about it, and I had to bring those two factions back together. And I was surprised that I could because I had some strong feelings about who should be elected. And I feel that I learned a great deal at that point, and I'm at that place now. That I'm going out more as a scholar than a politician. And that I'm going to work towards good politics regardless of whether it's Democrat or Republican. And I think that's a contribution that I can make, in my thinking, that's better than if I remained partisan. So, you know, I can look at the Martin administration or I can look at the Holshouser administration and be honest about what happened or what didn't happen, and the Hunt administration. And Hunt was highly political. Probably the most political governor we've had for some time, but he did some good things.
KATHRYN NASSTROM:
I think our tape is just about to end, so I want to thank you for doing this interview with me.
GRACE JEMISON ROHRER:
You're welcome.
END OF INTERVIEW