GEORGIA HISTORY PAGE NUMBER 2

 

Georgia JCI Senate History

By

Jeff Davis # 1233

Georgia Rebel Corp # 008

During the early days of  Junior Chamber International the Georgia Jaycees furnished much of the leadership which came in the form of individuals participation by a number of Jaycees who took it upon themselves to enhance the world organization. There was no official organization and the efforts was undertaken at the individual own expense which in some cases was considerable when you consider that several annually attended world congresses at places like Melbourne, Australia, Tokyo Japan, Paris France, San Juan Puerto Rico. In fact, at virtually every World Congress during the fifties and sixties there was one or more Georgia Jaycees present.

The Georgia Jaycees felt the world organization was an important part or their Jaycee lives and led the U.S. Jaycees in the establishment of two important programs.

 

First a highly placed statewide elective office of International Director was enacted, this was the only elected office other than State President which candidates ran statewide like State President as opposed to National Directors who ran as a group on a plurality basis. Because of this, International Director became a stepping stone to State President.

Several states adapted the idea of International Director and began sending their duly elected representative to the annual board of directors in Tulsa where a group engaged in planning and programs under the leadership of a national vice president for international affairs.

Among the early Georgia leaders who served as international Homer Winkle of Dalton who was the original ID from Georgia and served three terms in the years of l951-52, Horace Evans of Perry, State President l952-53, Charlie Robbins of Statesboro State President and l953-54, Carl Vann of Valdosta State President.

A.M. 'Gus' Wilson, of Atlanta served as International Director in the administration of Hal Salfen of Atlanta in l954-55. Wyndell Dykes of Cochran, was elected for the 1955-56 term during the Presidency of Steve Knight of Columbus. Eddie Parker of Brunswick was International Director in l956-57, administration of Abit Massey who was then from Dekalb County. Jeff Davis of then the Glenwood club in Dekalb County was elected in l957-58 under State President Eddie Parker of Brunswick. Sam Doss of Rome was International Director in 1958-59 during the presidency of Jeff Davis of Glenwood. Bill Treadaway of Moultrie was elected ID for 1959-60 in the administration of John Lassiter of Savannah. Jimmy Stewart of Waycross served as International Director in 1960-6l during the presidential term of Doug Blankenship of College Park. T. Malone Sharpe, of Lyons was International Director in 1961-62 while Clarence Hise of Kennesaw Mountain was serving as state president. THIS IS AS FAR AS I HAVE RECORDS ON INTERNATIONAL DIRECTOR.

Second the  important historical event involving Georgia Jaycees was the leadership in getting every Jaycee in the U. S. to join JCI. Up until 1957 membership in JCI was an individual or club decision. Jeff Davis took the lead with the help of Ed Parker, Abit Massey, Steve Knight, Wyndell Dykes and many others passed a motion unanimously at the state meeting to enroll l00% of Georgia Jaycees in Junior Chamber International. This led to a movement in the U.S. Jaycees, which was in part headed by Jeff Davis of Georgia to enact l00% dues collection as part of club dues for JCI membership. Others involved in this effort were Alden Allen of Minnesota, Johnny Clark of Tennessee, Morgan Doughton of Pennsylvania, Jim Cashman of Nevada among many others. Among the Georgia Jaycees in the fifties and sixties who regularly attended world Congresses were: Paul Tennenbaum of Dalton, Carter 'Cracker' Barron of Atlanta, Wyndell Dykes of Cochran, Ed Parker of Brunswick, Jeff Davis of Glenwood, Jimmy "Bubba" Irvin of Albany, Steve Knight of Columbus, along with others. Another interesting note about the Georgia Jaycee international involvement is that of Jim Westberry then of the Atlanta club whom served as U. S. Jaycee Treasurer, and also national vice president. He moved for a time to Peru and became president of the Peru Jaycees and a world vice president. Georgia had several world officers during the fifties and sixties. Included were World Vice Presidents Steve Knight of Columbus, Jeff Davis of Glenwood and Jim Westberry of Atlanta. As an unorganized predecessor to the Georgia Senate, the Georgia Senators beginning in the fifties annually presented a trophy to the Georgia Jaycee chapter, which contributed the most toward JCI.

 

There was a predecessor JCI Senate club organized in the fall of l960 at the quarterly state meeting in Atlanta. Doug Blankenship was state president. A total of 20 senators formed the charter membership of the club.

The charter officers elected by the founders were all past state presidents; Eddie Parker of Brunswick, Chairman, Abit Massey, DeKalb County, Vice Chairman and Steve Knight of Columbus, Secretary-Treasurer. There was no national Senate organization at the time; however, several states had organized similar senate groups.

 

Georgia Rebel Corp History

The Rebel Corps came into being as an organization to recognize the accomplishments of outstanding local Jaycees in Georgia most of whom would not be candidates for the Senate but who had performed meritoriously in their local and the state organization.

The Rebel Corps came about as a replacement group for a very informal
organization known as The Royal Order of Knights Reminiscent. Several outstanding Jaycees felt
the Knights Reminiscent were too exclusive, more like a fraternity and desired some type of organization
more open and geared to greater support of the state Jaycee organization The Knights Reminiscent were more of a fun
seeking group. Their functions were closed and featured drinking, gambling and telling stories, many of which became more and more exaggerated. The membership card featured a picture of Claude "Deacon" Kent's finger limp and pointed downward.

Among the key Knights were Ed Parker and Clint Knight of Brunswick, Wendell Dykes of Cochran, Claude Kent of Columbus, Walt Dunwody, of Atlanta. Jeff Davis, of Glenwood.

The Knights became extinct following the formation of The Rebel Corps. When the Rebel Corps was formed, 20 charter members (the first 20 numbers) elected the first commander, Abit Massey and the first Adjutant, Jim Pullin, both of Dekalb County as first officers. The first 20 numbers were assigned pretty much by lot except the prime movers took the first two numbers, Jim Pullin being first.

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