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Phae H. Dorman

August 7, 1933 April 17, 2019
Phae H. Dorman
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Obituary for Phae H. Dorman

Phae Louise Hubble Dorman, age 85, transitioned to Spirit on Wednesday, April 17, 2019. The daughter of Ernestine I. Hubble and birth father Frederick Isgrig, Phae was born in Little Rock, Arkansas; but later moved with her mother and sisters, Bettye and Trayce to join her older brother Frank Hubble in Peoria, Illinois. She grew up in Peoria and graduated from Peoria Central High School. She entered Wilberforce University in Ohio where she earned her baccalaureate and later completed a Master’s degree in Library Science at Atlanta University in 1955. As a graduate of two Black colleges, Phae acquired an in-depth knowledge of African American literature and books for children.

Phae returned to Peoria, Illinois as a trained librarian, where she was employed by the Peoria Public Library. It was during this time that she met her husband Dr. Linneaus Dorman, on a blind date while he was attending Bradley University in Peoria. Their romance flowered and they married on June 21, 1958. The couple have two children; daughter Evelyn, born in 1959 in Peoria, and son John Albert III, born in 1961 in Midland.

The Dormans moved to Midland in 1960 when Lin was hired as the first African American chemist for the Dow Chemical Company in Midland. In the beginning, they were the lone Black family in the Midland community and are considered pioneers who led to the recruitment of other Black professionals who followed. Phae was highly visible and active in the Midland community and became a charter member of many of Midland’s emergent organizations, including service on the Boards of Midland County League of Women Voters, Midland-Gladwin Community Mental Health, Midland Center for the Arts, Friends of the Library, and Mitten Bay Girl Scouts Council, among many others.

Among the notable contributions made by Phae was her voluntary guidance to the Grace A. Dow Library and the libraries of the Midland Public Schools to ameliorate their limited collections of books, titles and learning materials about Black America and people of color to become more inclusive of non-white groups. Her efforts led to greater awareness and appreciation of diversity in the community. As the Dorman family settled in Midland, Phae became a trusted resource to the schools, serving on the MPS Curriculum Committee and working part time at the Grace A. Dow Library for 10 years. She was also a leading resource of a Minority Books and Art Fair at the Dow Library, which was sponsored by the Midland Black Coalition and held annually in Midland for five years.

In addition to assisting as a volunteer and Board member in many local organizations, Phae was one of 15 Black women who chartered the first local chapter of a National Black Women’s group – Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. in 1978. As a service organization, the Mu Alpha Omega Chapter of AKA in Midland has strengthened the community through educational programs and scholarships for children and youth to which Phae has been a strong contributor.

Phae joined the Dow Chemical Company in 1973 as Business Information Librarian. She was named supervisor of the Business Information Center in 1974 and Manager in 1980. During her career at Dow she authored Chemical Industries: An Information Source Book, published by Oryx Press (1988) and widely used in the chemical industry. In 1977 she assumed responsibilities for supervising Dow U.S.A. Business Libraries and Legal Library facilities throughout the country and was responsible for reorganizing the Legal Library and instituting LEXIS, a computerized system for legal research. Phae retired from Dow Chemical in 1994.

Even as retirees, Phae with her husband Lin, has continued to be active as a community resource and as a philanthropist. Her establishment of the Phae H. Dorman Endowed Scholarship at Saginaw Valley State University honors her own contribution to civil rights and memorializes the role of Rosa Parks, a civil rights heroine. In recognition of their support to the university, Phae and Lin received the 2002 SVSU Distinguished Service Medallion; and in 2011 Phae was featured among others in a Midland History exhibit of “Voices: Extraordinary Women of Midland County.” Not to be ignored are Phae’s research skills coupled with her interest in genealogy which led her to compile exhaustive histories of the Dorman and Hubble families, complete with artifacts, certificates, letters and census records.

This woman, affectionately known by many who loved her as Phae Louise, Mom, Ma, Auntie, Phae Mae and Dear, is survived by her loving husband Lin of 60 years; daughter Evelyn and son John Albert III; Sisters and brothers-in-law Jessye Walker (Jon Lee), Zella Dorman (John Jr.), and William Holmes (LaVerne); nieces and nephews Theresa Tatum, Melanie Anderson, Donetta Calloway, Yvonne Walker, Lydia Dorman, Lynda Dorman, Sia Walker; Frank Hubble, Jr. (Imelda); Steve Calloway (Iris), David Anthony (Karen) Calloway, Glen A. Dorman (Bettina), Shomarka Keita (Caroline), Marlon Walker, James Lawrence Dorman (Uzma) Lynwood Holmes and many grand nieces, nephews and cousins as well as her many friends who loved her and shared in her life journey.

A wake will be held Wed., May 1, from 6 to 8 pm at Ware-Smith Woolever Funeral Home, 1200 W. Wheeler Street, Midland. An additional visitation will be held Thursday at 10 am, followed by a memorial service at 11 am at the United Church of Christ, 4100 Chestnut Hill Drive. In lieu of flowers, the family requests contributions to the Phae H. Dorman Scholarship Fund at Saginaw Valley State University, or to the United Church of Christ, Midland, Michigan.


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Previous Events

Visitation

Wednesday

1

May

6:00 PM 5/1/2019 6:00:00 PM - 8:00 PM 5/1/2019 8:00:00 PM
Ware-Smith-Woolever Midland Chapel

1200 West Wheeler Street
Midland, MI 48640

Ware-Smith-Woolever Midland Chapel
1200 West Wheeler Street Midland 48640 MI
United States

Visitation

Thursday

2

May

10:00 AM 5/2/2019 10:00:00 AM - 11:00 AM 5/2/2019 11:00:00 AM
United Church of Christ

4100 Chestnut Hill Dr
Midland, MI 48642

United Church of Christ
4100 Chestnut Hill Dr Midland 48642 MI
United States

Memorial Service

Thursday

2

May

11:00 AM 5/2/2019 11:00:00 AM
United Church of Christ

4100 Chestnut Hill Dr
Midland, MI 48642

United Church of Christ
4100 Chestnut Hill Dr Midland 48642 MI
United States

Memorial Contribution

United Church of Christ

4100 Chestnut Hill Dr
Midland, MI 48642

Phae H. Dorman Scholarship Fund at Saginaw Valley State University

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