By Laura Jones and Dr. Robert L. Herron |
March is Women’s History Month, and March 8th was International Women’s Day.
Accordingly, we wanted to share a brief story of sport and baseball hero that adds the accolades of baseball players from Mobile County (Alabama), including 5 MLB Hall of Famers.
Delores “Dolly” Brumfield White was born May 26, 1932, in Prichard, AL. She developed her elite athletic skills competing with young people who worked in the shipyards in Mobile. Interestingly, Dolly had a whole professional baseball career prior to enrolling in college. After signing her first professional baseball contract at 14 years old with the South Bend Blue Sox, she was part of the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League for seven years – retiring from her professional baseball career at the age of 21.
Her professional baseball career took her many places, including spring training in Havana, Cuba in 1947. However, a stent with the Fort Wayne Daisies and manager Jimmie Foxx is noteworthy and most recognizable by many because the Daisies and Foxx were team and manager that served as the inspiration of the 1992 film, “A League of Their Own” – which had a recent TV series remake in 2022.
Her baseball career financed her path to higher education, but her athletic career did not end there. Dolly graduated in 1954 from Alabama College for Women (now the University of Montevallo) with a degree in Physical Education and was a standout on the varsity volleyball team as well as in many other roles on campus. Sports provided Dolly a medium through which she could change her life but also provided a pathway to help change the lives of many others.
After working as a coach and physical educator, Dolly went back to school and completed a master’s degree and doctoral degree from the University of Southern Mississippi.
Her career then moved to higher education where she worked at Copiah-Lincoln Community College – in Wesson, MS – and later served as a faculty member for 31 years in the Health, Physical Education, and Recreation Department at Henderson State University in Arkansas. Amazingly, Dolly was also the head swimming coach from 1963-1982 for Henderson State University.
After retirement, Dolly continued to actively work in her community until her passing in 2020. Her impact on sport and physical education is still felt today as her legacy is passed on through those she taught and she paved the way for many other women and girls in sports.
We would like to take a moment and celebrate Delores “Dolly” Brumfield White, and so many other amazing women during Women’s History Month.
Laura Jones is a Senior undergraduate student at the University of Montevallo studying Exercise and Nutrition Science. Laura is the current Social Media Chair of the Exercise Science Club at the University of Montevallo and will begin pursuing a master’s degree in fall 2023.
Robert L. Herron, Ed.D., NSCA-CSCS*D, ACSM-CEP is an Assistant Professor in the Exercise and Nutrition Science Program at the University of Montevallo. Dr. Herron is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist® with distinction from the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA-CSCS*D®) and a Clinical Exercise Physiologist through the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM-CEP®). Dr. Herron is a graduate of the United States Sports Academy and serves as a Non-Resident Faculty Member.