May 21, 1985

by Dee Cole, State Director

Good morning, Madam Director, Members and Friends:

Thank you for inviting me and allowing me to participate in this ritual of the Installation of your new Board of Directors.

Rituals are an important part of our lives. We have wedding ceremonies, memorial services, baptisms, graduations, birthday parties, and many other kinds of festivities, which serve to create memories of a significant event. Symbols also have great consequence for us, although usually they are more mysterious and we must delve a little deeper to find their true meaning.

For instance, wildflowers in the spring are symbols of the renewal and abundance of life after a long winter sleep. Diamonds, emeralds, rubies and other colored gems are symbols of birthdays and silver and gold represent the 25th and 50th wedding anniversaries.

Colors are also symbols, each color and nuance representing interior and exterior facets of our psychological composition and our environment.

A hot air balloon is a symbol, too. It is an actualization of travel, adventure, the excitement of the unknown and, especially, it is a symbol of our dreams. Who has not had visions of floating away to some magical kingdom and seeing far below rivers sparkling in the sunshine, wild zebras playing on the veldt or alpacas grazing on the high meadows of the Andes?

Today we are seeing some friends off on an imaginary journey in a hot air balloon. Each one will wear a new hat as a symbol of her trip. Each hat is a different color, representing the gift she carries with her. These gifts will be given to others, and when our friends return, they will have enriched their own lives as well as the lives of each of us.

Mrs. William (Betty) Allen.

As PARLIAMENTARIAN, your hat is RED. Red is the color symbol of strength, the banner of courage unwavering in adversity. Red as it represents a judge’s robe. Red as a powerful instrument of the law to see that the will of the people is upheld in a constitutional manner. Your responsibility is to be knowledgeable in your duty, to be wise in its application and to administer the rules with personal impartiality.

The gifts you take with you on this journey to spread among this Hemisphere are Freedom from Prejudice and the Conviction to uphold the principles on which the Pan American Round Tables were formed, those same principles having served us justly. You, also, take with you the instrument for Hope and Peace among nations.

Mrs. W. F. (Rosalis) McCroskey:

As CUSTODIAN, you will wear a hat of many -colors, a multitude of hues intertwining and blending together. These colors are symbols of the flags of all the countries of the Americas, which you will guard with honor and respect. The flag is one of the greatest symbols of all as it represents a nation of individuals with different ideas finally formed into a cohesive, viable entity. You are the caretaker, the guardian, of many nations' struggles and hopes fulfilled at last.

The gift you take with you and that you bring to your Table is UNITY.

Mrs. J. T.(Lillian) Mahoney

As TREASURER, your hat is painted GREEN, surely God's favorite color. Green represents Nature's bounty and the promise of the harvest. Literature is filled with references to this color; HOW GREEN WAS MY VALLEY, "He maketh me to lie down in green pastures," and many others. Even the names of certain greens evoke visions of the exotic. We have absinthe, beryl, celadon, moss and myrtle, malachite, jade and emerald. We have Egyptian, Nile, Irish, Paris, Veronese and Vienna greens.

And we have currency, the greenback Currency is a symbol, too, for paper money has no value in itself; it is only a substitute for gold or silver as coins replaced the barter system for goods or services.

Your responsibility is to be the caretaker and record keeper of the assets of your Table, of gifts received and given. Your gifts to dispense on this journey are Diligence, Honesty and Charity.

Mrs. Robert (Chispa) Bluntzer, Jr.

As CORRESPONDING SECRETARY, your hat is a happy pink. Pink is the color symbol of affection, of sharing and giving of yourself. With the strength of red softened by blending the white of purity, pink is understanding and forgiving. Your responsibility is a great one, for you represent your Table in all written words. You spread good cheer, official news, and sometimes words of sympathy. With every letter, you portray yourself, your Table and your country to others. You are the personal ambassador – of your Table and your represent it for every member. Hence, you carry with you to distant lands the important message of Friendship.

Mrs. John (Harriet) Ray, as Recording Secretary, you will wear a hat of bright orange.

As the orange color of an early morning sun, you send out illumination and accuracy. As the orange of a Harvest Moon, you spread the light of Truth in records well kept.

Blending the colors, red and yellow, you representing the melding of Character and Intelligence, of Illumination. As colors change with the season, so change the cycles of life. The records you keep today will pass on to the Historian for posterity. In these ever shifting times, your gift is important, for it is the special one of CONTINUITY.

Mrs. Byron (Lib) Vestal,

As Fourth Associate Director, your hat is a shining yellow, bright as sunshine, spreading happy rays of enlightenment over all countries. You are Guardian of the Past, the priceless record of humanity's lessons and achievements. You keep a diary of the accomplishments of your Table, and you attempt to see that they are recognized and published. You are an official translator for your Table, translating your activities and good will and charity to print so that the public can understand the goals of the Pan American movement.

Yellow is the color of the Intellect. With the gift of intelligence, we have the opportunity to benefit from our mistakes and failures, sometimes very slowly revealed by history, and to grow from these experiences. The gift you take with you on this flight should be scattered to the winds fully and well, for your gift is UNDERSTANDING.

Mrs. Margaret Alexander, as Third Associate Director, the hat you will wear today is colored LILAC. Your duties for the coming year are dispensing Hospitality and Courtesy. Using the charming color of lilac, this should be an easy chore for you. Lilac is a spiritual color blending blue, red and white. It is softened by experience and strengthened by knowledge. In intensity, it is close to the pink of friendship. Lilac is a symbol of peace and tranquillity. Because you are concerned with the ease of others, you extend the courtesy that is natural to this color. And with a special sensitivity, you offer your gifts most generously to others.

As gifts, you carry with you many elements. Grace the fragrance of Fresh Spring lilacs, and Wisdom, the greatest gift of all.

Mrs. Bertram (Louise) Parker,

As Second Associate Director, you will represent the membership of the Corpus Christi Table. And you will wear a hat with the color TURQUOISE. The color is as solid as the stone from which it was cleft. Turquoise is a mineral containing many elements, as your responsibilities will be comprised of various duties. It is found in Mexico near Oaxaca, in the southwestern part of the United States, and in Afghanistan, Russia and Turkey, where it was named. As the mineral is found in such different places, so is your membership a rich blend of diverse personalities, of different characteristics and beliefs.

American Indians wear turquoise as healing amulets, as you will attempt to fuse and consolidate separate opinions and viewpoints into a melodious whole. They often paint their windows a turquoise color to keep out evil spirits. You will seek to protect the integrity of your Table and assure the membership of a continuing democratic spirit. The gift you take with you is invaluable, for you will give HARMONY.

Mrs. Kenneth (Cecile) Wavell,

As First Associate Director, in charge of Programs, you wear a hat of Blue. Blue – a color representing many things, as your duties will be highly varied. True Blue – meaning loyalty, compassion, purity, honesty and understanding. And the ability to stand fast in your ideals.

Blue, the color of the far away sky .....

For if we can distance ourselves far enough, we can increase our vision and our perception of the world.

We can see cities instead of neighborhoods. We can see States instead of cities, and we can see nations instead of states. And we can see the earth in its wholeness as we glide high above in our imaginary balloon, thereby gaining in understanding the differences that make up our world. And perhaps, with enough vision, we might stress the similarities among peoples, rather than differences.

With this rich inheritance of the color Blue, you will serve your Director and your Table well for the wonderful gifts you take with you are Fidelity, Willingness to Serve and Ideals.

Mrs. F. B. (Nancy) Cochran

As Director of the Corpus Christi Pan American Round Table, your hat is the magnificent color PURPLE, the royal color of Kings and Queens.

Blending blue and red, purple represents a passionate belief in ideals and the courage necessary to follow them. Paradoxically, it also represents humility. For to be a leader, one must first learn to follow. Purple signifies the ability to serve others and to represent them accurately.

It is strength tempered by justice, justice tempered by compassion and compassion tempered by understanding. It is the acceptance of sorrow and joy and the willingness to share these major dramas of our lives.

It is the quietness to listen, the stillness to hear and the unprejudiced receptivity to change one's mind.

Your gifts to carry on this long journey are both TEACHING and LEARNING, both LEADING and FOLLOWING. For it is you who will carry the beacon of light to show the way. It is you, sharing this common bond with the other members of your Board, who will take with you a heritage of beliefs in Panamericanism to spread friendship, knowledge and understanding to all the Americas.

Having been duly installed as the Corpus Christi, Texas, Board of Directors you are all now ready to depart on your travels, taking wondrous gifts with you. May all of you have a wonderful, rewarding and joyous journey.

Y vayan con Dios. Thank you.

Return to Installations...

Return to PARTT Homepage...