Biography: Dorothy Mae (Steele) Vereen was born in Clarkton, North Carolina on March 14, 1938. The third born of Fannie and Norman Steele, Sr. She was a devoted Wife, Mother, Grandmother, great Grandmother, Sister, Sister-in-law, Aunt, Niece, Cousin and Friend. She was a Phenomenal Woman, a dedicated Christian and one of the most genuinely honest individuals you could ever meet. The eldest girl of thirteen, she attended Porterville Elementary School, Booker T. Washington High School and Johnson C. Smith University, where she earned her B.A. in Education. She continued her education and received her M.A. in Early Childhood Education from Adelphi University, NYC. She completed many certifications and she was most proud of The Infant Studies Certification from Bank Street College, NYC.
Born and raised in the Christian Faith, she was a firm believer in the power of God. She was a member of St. Augustine Presbyterian Church, where she served as an Elder for many years. Walking in faith, her motto always was “This Too Shall Pass.” A Strong, Graceful and Classy woman, she met and married B. Franklin Vereen, Sr. (deceased) bringing to this union three children, Victor, Vanessa and B. Franklin Vereen, Jr. Together for over forty-five years, they exuded the epitome of unity in marriage, family, work and community. A loving and wonderful wife who cherished her husband, they were inseparable. She was a mother who loved all her children, biological and adopted by love. She instilled the unity of family and education to all that entered her life and home while giving unconditional love with focus and discipline. She was a lover of gardening, traveling, music, art and education.
With more than 40 years in the field of Early Childhood Education as a Teacher, Director, HRA/ACD Consultant, and Director, ACS/HRA Child Care/Head Start Bronx, NY, where she retired in July 2006. She then started her own private training center The Road to Vision for Children. Always an Advocate and Guardian in the lives of children, she continued to teach, educate, train and certify the masses of educators so the young brains of our future would have the best opportunities to excel and succeed by any means necessary. The Matriarch leading the family (blood relative or not) providing guidance, support and wisdom. A confidante and friend who always gave a listening ear and unlimited time she was truly a gem whose mold could never be duplicated who touched a part of all our lives and for that reason, we thank God for allowing us to be part of her life and legacy.
To cherish her memories are: her children, Victor (Mechal), Vanessa, B. Franklin, Jr.; grandchildren, Jada Capers (Jeffrey), Nafisah, Raafiq, Chantel, Fatimah, B. Franklin, III, Janai and Nicole; great grandchildren, Ayanna, Tatiana, Janiya, Taliah, Cassidy, Aubrey and Kayden; siblings, Harry Lee Steele, Robert Steele, M. Ruth Shaw, Thomas J. Steele, Winifred Ramsey (Tony), James A. Steele (Janice), reverend Alfred E. Steele (Carolyn), Pamela Rogers (Leverne) and Debbie Jones (Michael); aunt, Doretha Jacobs; brothers/sisters-in-laws, nieces, nephews, cousins and Friends.