Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority mourns the passing of Mary Shy Scott, of Atlanta, Ga., on April 15, who served as the Sorority’s 23rd International president from 1990-1994. The theme of her administration was Creative Strategies for Action: Addressing the Crises of the 1990’s.
Speaking on behalf of Alpha Kappa Alpha’s 260,000 members worldwide, the Sorority’s International President Carolyn House Stewart, hailed Scott as a pioneer, visionary, civil rights activist and leader whose contributions to the world are unmatched and unparalleled.
“Mary Shy Scott was revered and leaves a legacy of love and service that is a model for all. Everyone she touched was inspired by her dedication, her grace and her rare sense of resolve and purpose,” declared Stewart. “She will be greatly missed and will be forever cherished.”
Stewart recounted that from the day she was initiated into Kappa Omega chapter in 1953, Mary Shy Scott fully embraced Alpha Kappa Alpha’s mission of service to all mankind. This was embodied in the programs she advanced, the themes she advocated and the strides she made to broaden the Sorority’s reach globally.”
Stewart said that she served in a variety of leadership positions, including chapter president, and as the 10th South Atlantic Regional Director for the South Atlantic region from 1982- 1986. The South Atlantic Region is the sorority’s largest region, which covers Florida, Georgia and South Carolina.
In 1986, she was elected first international vice president, thereby positioning her to become the Sorority’s 23rd international president in 1990.
Some of the tremendous strides made under her leadership included addressing creative strategies for action in the areas of education, health, economics, family, arts and the world community.
Mary Shy Scott spearheaded the effort to erect the first non-military memorial to those who fought at Pearl Harbor. The memorial, in Honolulu, was dedicated to the heroism of World War II veteran Doris “Dorie” Miller, an African-American sailor and “unsung hero.”
A proponent of education, she leveraged her position as international president to forge a partnership with the Library of Congress in their mutual mission to promote reading. She also introduced the conceptual Ivy AKAdemy where every chapter committed to address the reading needs of African-American children.
During her tenure, the Sorority renewed the $15.5 million federal contract to refurbish the AKA Cleveland Job Corps. With the newly-acquired skills taught by a dedicated core of members, thousands of young adults came through its doors saw their lives transformed from being unemployed and unskilled to becoming productive members of the workforce.