Booker T. Felder

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“Mr. Felder is one of the people in Tuskegee that I must see whenever I visit my old alma mater; he is one of Tuskegee's natural treasures. Tuskegee wouldn't be the same without him,” says class of '92 graduate Mike Landrum. Upon entering Mr. Felder’s shop, I was not only taken aback by the enormous amount of “Skegee gear,” but by the liveliness and mobility of this elderly, slender fair-skinned man. I felt that Mr. Felder was a very humble man who is truly passionate about his work. Booker Taliaferro Felder, who was named by his father after the founder of Tuskegee Institute, was born June 4, 1922 in Waycross, Georgia. Booker’s father recognized the greatness that Booker T. Washington portrayed; his father wanted to instill those values in his son. In 1924 the family moved to Tampa, Florida where young Booker completed his elementary and high school education. He was married to his late wife, Deborah, for 35 years and has a son, Marc. He is an avid collector of American Flyer Trains as well as exotic fish. Also, he thoroughly enjoys meeting and fellowshipping with people. Mr. Felder enrolled in Tuskegee Institute in 1941 and continued his education until 1943 when he enlisted in the U.S. army and became a member of the famed 92nd Infantry Division, a part of the old historic “Buffalo Soldiers Regiment.” From 1943 to 1946, his infantry unit encountered much combat on the front lines in Italy during World War II. He was wounded in combat and returned from the war with a Purple Heart, a Bronze Star, and a shrapnel-fragments of a bomb, shell, or other object thrown out by an explosion-still lodged in his body. After the war, he returned to Tuskegee and completed his degree in Commercial Industries and Tailoring and graduated Cum ... ... middle of paper ... ... The Delbert H. Johnson Man of the Year which is given annually by Lewis Adams Lodge No. 67 Prince Hall, Friendship and Service to the Community award, Advisor to the Atlanta-Tuskegee Alumni Club, Personalities of South Award in recognition of Achievements and Outstanding Service to the Community, Alpha Kappa Mu Regional Director’s Award, Award for Excellence in Fashion Design (Iota Omega Chapter of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity). . To this day, Felder can be found directly across from the main gate running Felder’s. I was impressed to learn about his wonderful designs and daily contact with the students and staff of Tuskegee University. He is a good role model and a positive influence for the community’s young adults. The example you sets for today’s yuth demonstrates that they can achieve success also. I am very grateful for the opportunity to get to know Mr. Felder.

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