Benefiting North Edgecombe High School
Through the Annie and Sallie Ann Wheeler Memorial Scholarship Endowment,
their legacy endures.
Annie and Sallie Ann Wheeler were two African American sisters who inspired countless members of their community. The Wheeler sisters lived just a few miles from North Edgecombe High School, in a little red house where they raised three generations of children who went on to become NEHS Warriors.
Annie was a sharecropper who worked the tobacco fields, often in sweltering heat. Sallie Ann, despite being struck with polio at an early age, was a domestic worker for decades, cleaning houses and helping raise other people’s children. They were always willing to share whatever they had to give, whether it was food, shelter, emotional support or prayers of comfort.
Although Annie and Sallie Ann never received the level of formal education they deserved, they valued it immensely and devoted their lives to ensuring the children in their family had access to education and opportunities. Just as essential, they imparted their wisdom regarding the importance of hard work, compassion and living one’s life with integrity. They were also God-fearing women who instilled in everyone around them the notions of never settling for less and always striving to exceed your circumstances.
A beautiful quote by the late Maya Angelou reads, “A hero is any person really intent on making this a better place for all people.” It perfectly encapsulates what those two women meant to so many. Legacy is about so much more than the people we leave behind. It’s also about shining a light onto those who came before us, those unsung heroes who bravely pushed open the doors that have allowed us the space to move forward. And with the annual nature of this historic honor, these two incredible women will never be forgotten.
Annie passed away in March 1998, and Sallie Ann passed away in March 2010. In 2021, two of their nephews, Jamaal D. Pittman and Linwood E. Hinton, established the Annie and Sallie Ann Wheeler Memorial Scholarship Endowment in their honor.
The Annie and Sallie Ann Wheeler Memorial Scholarship supports one graduating senior from North Edgecombe High School enrolling in a two- or four-year college who has demonstrated two qualities Annie and Sallie Ann had in abundance: a passion for learning and a commitment to helping others. This scholarship not only honors the legacies of these two great women and the Wheeler family’s history at the school, but it also provide students with a chance to further their education and reach their fullest potential.
The scholarship is a nonrenewable, one-time payment made to the winner's college or university at the start of their fall semester.
The Annie and Sallie Ann Wheeler Memorial Scholarship Endowment is professionally managed and invested by the North Carolina Community Foundation, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. Donations are fully tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law.
North Carolina Community Foundation
3737 Glenwood Ave.
Raleigh, NC 27612
Video honoring Annie and Sallie Ann Wheeler, the inspiration behind the historic Wheeler Memorial Scholarship Endowment.
“The Color Purple,” Performed by Jennifer Hudson & Cynthia Erivo
“We Are Family,” by Sister Sledge, Nile Rodgers, Bernard Edwards
Jamaal D. Pittman (class of ’99) is an award-winning copy editor and screenwriter who resides in Los Angeles, California. Pittman is a graduate of Morehouse College. Linwood E. Hinton (class of ’08) is a combat veteran and entrepreneur currently serving our country as a Gunnery Sergeant in the United States Marine Corps, based in Las Vegas, Nevada. Hinton has earned degrees from Ashford University and Southern Illinois University Carbondale. The North Carolina Community Foundation is the state’s single statewide community foundation and has awarded more than $184 million in grants. A major component of NCCF’s mission is to bolster rural philanthropy at local, regional and national levels.
Email Cofounder Jamaal D. Pittman: firstname.lastname@example.org
Email Donor Engagement Officer Jan Pender at the North Carolina Community Foundation: email@example.com
Email Communications Coordinator Tenikka Smith Hughes: firstname.lastname@example.org