Getting To Know…Helen P. Gay

Getting To Know…Helen P. Gay

Helen P. Gay (Photo: City of Rocky Mount)

Known For: Former city councilwoman, community advocacy

About: Gay was the first African-American woman to serve on the Rocky Mount City Council. She served 20 years on the council and also served as Mayor Pro Tem four times. The Rocky Mount native was instrumental in key downtown revitalization projects and the city honored her impressive drive and persistence by naming its renovated train station, the Helen P. Gay Rocky Mount Historic Train Station, after her. Gay, who is 92, graduated from Barber-Scotia College and also attended State College (now North Carolina State University). The Rocky Mount resident has received numerous merit and service awards, was inducted into the Twin County Hall of Fame, which honors citizens of Edgecombe and Nash counties, and was awarded one of the state's highest orders, the Order of the Long Leaf Pine.

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