MoRA advocates often hear from people impressed by what we’ve accomplished in such a short time, and who are excited about the community that is being created.
The credit, of course, belongs to many. But here’s where much of the credit rightfully goes: Mary Cagle Hopper, a semi-retired PR consultant and former planning commissioner whose vast background has been to MoRA’s great benefit because of her involvement during our formative months.
Mary is smart and funny and sharp-witted and her background is crazy impressive:
A former Queens College professor with her PhD in Romance Languages, Mary turned her business focus over to PR, where her skills earned six national awards and numerous local awards. She was a founding member of Women Business Executives, a past president of Dilworth Community Association, and the executive director of University City Partners for five years. She was in Class 2 of Leadership Charlotte back in its founding year, now approaching its 39thclass.
Mary advised MoRA’s Land Use committee as it navigated the rezoning proposal for the development approved for Idlewild and Monroe Roads. Her expertise comes from many years working on a number of the City’s most challenging rezonings and transportation issues in Dilworth, Midtown, South End, Freedom Drive, SouthPark. She was on the Planning Commission for eight years, two as its chair. Over the years, she found that her language skills have enabled her to translate arcane jargon into concepts that people could understand and embrace to improve their neighborhoods.
But before, during and after her extensive career has been Mary’s passion and activism for women’s rights. She worked hard in the ‘70’s to get the Equal Rights Amendment passed. (“I learned that facts and logic lose to fear and hyperbole every time.”) With the recent election results, she wonders, “Did we not often enough or well enough tell the story of what it was like for women before women’s rights?”
So, as Dr. Mary Hopper turns her attention once again to women’s rights and supporting women’s voices in local elections, MoRA is deeply grateful to have been the beneficiary of her great generosity of time over these last two years. From our branding efforts to our communication platforms to our strategic planning, Mary’s influence is woven throughout our organization. Our MoRA community has been enriched, and we thank Mary for her passion and her intellect, for her actions and her advocacy to the profound benefit of our community and the city of Charlotte.