A World War II veteran, Waverly Glover (Wilberforce Alumni) graduated with a bachelor’s of science degree from Central State University in 1949 and became one of Greater Dayton’s first African-American certified public accountants in 1961.
His career spanned 36 years and he used his talents in many notable positions, including serving as finance director and assistant city manager for the city of Springfield. He won numerous awards and accolades for his work and was inducted into the Wilberforce University Hall of Fame in 1999. Though he has enjoyed many successes in his 92 years, Glover is most proud of his charitable achievements and the ways in which he’s been able to give back and help others.
Who influenced your desire to give back to the community?
My parents were very generous people. My mother always said, “When good things happen to you, you have to give something back.” Growing up, this was instilled in me and my six brothers and sisters by our parents.
What is your earliest memory about giving?
Like most families, my family suffered during the Great Depression. The foundry that my father worked at closed, but he managed to keep a vegetable garden and some chickens for us so that we’d have food to eat. People would come by our house hungry, and my mother would make them a sandwich or offer them a cup of coffee. Eventually my father found work through the Public Works Administration helping to build roads. It was quite a blessing to find work like that in those times. We were sincerely grateful for the opportunities we had and wanted to share our blessings.
What impact did your experiences in World War II have on you?
My three and half years spent as a member of the U.S. Army was a life-altering experience. I was extremely fortunate during my time in the service. I was never involved in direct fire and worked in supply at a medical unit where wounded soldiers were treated. I spent most of my time serving in England and had the opportunity to study at three British universities – Bristol, Edinburgh and Oxford. I also was able to travel throughout Europe, and I even got to see the Louvre, just one exciting thing after another. It was a lot different than Mount Vernon, Ohio, the small town I grew up in. It opened my eyes to a world of opportunities and inspired me to pay forward my own good fortune to help others.
Why did you decide to establish a scholarship fund through The Dayton Foundation?
Though my parents never finished high school, they were always focused on me and my siblings getting a good education. When we asked our father a question, he’d answer, ‘What does the book say?’ So, we’d all find a book and look up the answer and talk about it. That was one of the ways he encouraged his children academically. But, I grew up poor and didn’t know how I was going to get to college. After my time in the Army, I was very fortunate that the GI Bill helped me obtain my college degree. Now that I’m older and have more resources to help, I decided to establish The Waverly Glover Scholarship Fund through the African-American Community Fund (AACF) of The Dayton Foundation in 2004 to help students pursuing a business or accounting degree at Central State or Wilberforce universities. I want my scholarship fund to help others get an education in the same way that Uncle Sam helped me. The Dayton Foundation helps me do this.
What are some other ways that you help in the community?
Throughout my career, I served on several nonprofit boards of directors, including YMCA, YWCA and Central State University. I also helped organize fundraisers, including three black-tie galas for Wilberforce University in the mid-1990s. The director of Wilberforce University’s museum at that time told me that he wished the museum had more funds to purchase artifacts from the estate of Roots author Alex Haley. We brought in celebrities Harry Belafonte and Avery Brooks and author Clifton Taulbert for the events and raised $150,000 for the museum. I also helped my longtime friend and client, Henry A. Garcia, a former professor of music at Wilberforce and Central State universities, leave a bequest of $600,000 to establish another fund under the AACF of The Dayton Foundation. Most recently, I am happy to have reached a total of $100,000 in charitable donations of my own over the years.
What advice would you give to others about giving to the community?
It doesn’t matter if it’s your time or your resources, giving back can benefit you tremendously if you are in a position to do so. I get great satisfaction in knowing that I am helping someone through my scholarship fund. If everyone who received gave something back too – imagine what a wonderful world this would be.
By The Dayton Foundation
Source: Dayton Daily News