On March 7, 2019, long-time WFWP supporter Dr. Ester Davis drove more than 50 miles north of Dallas to Van Alstyne, Texas, to speak at a meeting of the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR). She was invited by her old friend Laura Hornbeck, a DAR officer and WFWP southwest regional chairwoman, to give a testimony about her incredible life.

The DAR was founded in 1890 during centennial celebrations of the inauguration of President George Washington. Since that time, almost one million women have qualified as members, tracing their ancestry back to a patriot of the American Revolution. With the motto of “God, Home, and Country,” chapters throughout the USA meet regularly to honor their heritage and promote education, historical preservation and patriotism.

The Sister Grove Chapter of the DAR rents the First Christian Church fellowship hall in Van Alstyne for their meetings. Part of the protocol of each meeting includes recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance, a prayer, and the national anthem. Laura usually leads the singing of the anthem, and it was a special treat for everyone when Ester played the piano.

After she was introduced by Laura, Ester took center stage and gave her presentation. She talked about her hardworking parents and other family members in the Houston area. Her father worked as a wood hauler during World War II, the only African-American in Houston doing so at that time. He endured incidents of racial violence during those years but didn’t like to talk about them, preferring to encourage his four children to do their best and not to make excuses.

After high school, Ester went to college, marched for civil rights in the 1960s, and then was hired by the Kodak Corporation, working in New York for many years. Returning to Texas, she was hired by the Kim Dawson modeling agency in Dallas, at a time when they were seeking young, petite African-American models. In the 1990s, she co-founded the Lace Glove Modeling school to boost the self-esteem of young people and discourage teen pregnancy.

Ester and Laura perform the National Anthem

Ester and Laura perform the National Anthem

Ester is known far and wide in Dallas for her compassionate activism. Lately she has been helping homeless high school athletes – victims of family breakdown. In 2017, she escorted a contingent of about 150 inner city youth to Washington, DC on a bus tour, raising funds from hotels, local businesses and others. Many of these youth had never been outside the city of Dallas.

From her earliest days, Ester has been an advocate for youth. Utilizing her skills and training in communications and media, she created a signature television show centered around family, community and the diverse cultures in Texas. “The Ester Davis Show” began on free access cable and was picked up by NBC, PAX-TV, and ION TV. She still produces this program on the internet dedicated to encouraging positive activities for the sake of a better community. She has been presented with many honors and awards and is a regular public speaker.

Ester is also a long-time staff writer for the Dallas Post Tribune newspaper, and other print and online publications. She earned a doctorate in religious studies in 2017 from Grace International Seminary in Dallas. She believes that many of today’s social problems could be alleviated if parents would take their children to church and strive to live God-centered lives. She and her husband raised two sons and adopted two others. A widow, Ester now has five grandsons and one granddaughter.

The thirteen DAR members and guests in attendance expressed great inspiration and enjoyment of Ester’s presentation and thanked her for sharing her story.