Black History Month
Dr. Charlottee Hawkins Brown
"FIrst lady of Social Graces"
February is Black History month, I am excited to spotlight Dr. Charlotte Hawkins Brown, an African American woman who was considered “The First Lady of Social Graces” dating back to 1902. She was a leading etiquette writer, speaker, teacher, entrepreneur and expert on etiquette from the 1900’s. Dr. Brown was and still is a woman who played a large part in the American History of etiquette being taught in a school, for over 50 years. In 1902, she founded the nationally renowned Palmer Memorial Institute, a preparatory school for African - American youth. In 1941 Christopher Publishing House of Boston, Massachusetts published Brown’s “The Correct Thing to Do, to Say, and to Wear.” In 1943, Brown gave a series of lectures at Tuskegee Institute. Her topics included “Character and the Social Graces,” “The Correct Thing,” and “The Art of Living Up to One’s Best.” At the Palmer Memorial Institute: good manners, a proper dress code, and social graces were the order of the day. Social gatherings chaperoned by teachers, and singing were always encouraged at the school.
Another notable expert in the field of etiquette, is author Edward S. Green, of “National Capital Code of Etiquette”, published in 1920. Mr Green worked for the United States government for eighteen years. He graduated from college and was a recognized man of letters and literacy among upper class African Americans and diplomatic circles in Washington D. C. and abroad. Mr. Green’s book “National Capital Code of Etiquette” aimed at teaching black people of all walks of life across the country the customs of the African American social elite. Subjects include how to dress for various occasions, correct table manners, how to conduct oneself in public, styles for visiting cards, and how to introduce friends and business acquaintances. Green also devotes much of the book to the art of conversation, how to commemorate wedding anniversaries, how to properly conduct social calls and activities, and proper mourning practices.
Unfortunately, American history books contained virtually no information on the history of African-Americans contribution and role as expert writers on the subject of etiquette in the United States. The only name associated as a leading expert in the etiquette field is Emily Post, dating back to 1922, and other white Americans as experts.
Spotlighting these two important leaders as part of our American History and African American history is important in educating others on their accomplishments in American. This found knowledge has inspired me to continue teaching etiquette, building the character of our youth prepareing them socially and professionally. My library of etiquette books, as resources has gotten bigger.
Refining Your Social Graces & Image for Success
At The Etiquette Touch Institute we strive to refine our clients social graces and image so that they are prepared in any social or profesional setting. Having proper etiquette will improve your confidence level, self-esteem, workplace etiquette, social skills, relationships, advancement and leadership.
Carolyn Powery is a national etiquette coach, author, trainer and speaker. She is the co-author of Madam CEO: How to Think and Act Like a Chief Executive; contributing chapter “Preparing Young Lades to be Professionally Poised and Polished, gearing towards high school and college young ladies. Her second co-authored book is Boys to Men; A Guide for African American Boys, contributing chapter “Becoming a Gentlemen”. Carolyn has been featured and quoted in, Southern Lady Magazine, 2011 March/April issue, on “Empowerment through Politeness” and featured in Palm Beach Today International Magazine. She has written articles and etiquette tips For "Be The Oak Foundation" and on various other websites. Radio interview with Community Central/Global Media, “Up Close and Personal with Carolyn Powery, and 2012, Blog Talk Radio with Marie Roker-James of Raising Great Men, on the topic of “Teaching Your Son Good Manners and Proper Etiquette”.
The Etiquette Touch Institute provide four areas of comprehensive programming, Etiquette & Image, Life Coaching, Pagantry, and Leadership, providing training for children through adults.
Carolyn is the Founder and CEO of The Etiquette Touch Institute, a finishing school locate in West Palm Beach, Florida. A finishing school of etiquette, image and personal development, specializing in social etiquette, communication etiquette, business etiquette, dining etiquette. and certified to teach etiquette to children. Her expertise has been used in school settings, college settings, non-profits, and businesses. Carolyn’s formal education backgroud includes The Etiquette Institute by Maria Edwing, National Association of Urban Etiquette Professionals, Bethune Cookman College and Nova Southeastern University.
Carolyn has provided etiquette training throughout South Florida, to public & private schools, unversities, non-profits and conferences.
“We brought Carolyn of Etiquette Touch in to customize an onsite workshop for the (11-14 year old) participants of Delta Academy. Carolyn did an outstanding job creating interactive sessions with the girls immediatly applying the lessons covered on table manners in a social setting which invluded table setting, handling utensils and appropriate dining conversations. The girls were very interested and actively participated in the exercises geared to their age group. I highly recommend Caroly for etiquette related assignments.
Robbie J Alexander, PMP, CSM
“Carolyn is the epitome of class. Her venture “The Etiquette Touch Institute’ is her gem. Not only is she a jo to work wiht she also is a hard worker who works to give back tothe community in which she lives. I recommend Caroly necasue she continues to make great moves and to make an impact. Sophia Nelson, Managing Partner, The Mosaic
The Etiquette Touch Institute reputation echoes social graces throughout the cummunities in Palm Beach County, as the organization participates in the training of contestants in beauty pageants, social groups & organizations ranging from ages 5 to 105 and leadeship forums. Mrs. Powery and The Etiquette Touch Institute staff, customized a 3 hour training session title “Etiquette for Athletics.” Her main focus was “As Athletics, you have outclassed your competition on the court, but now it’s time to learn how to outclass your competition off the court.” Topics of discussions were First Impressions, Social Media & Online Presence, Cell Phone - Texting is not a language skill, Attire & Appearance and Table Etiquette. The class held the attention of the twenty players for the entire 3 hours because of the diversity of the training. Players were able to participate through role-play, Q & A, video recording and lastly a lavish meal.
Geanine Wester, Atlantic High School Basketball Team Mom
Palm Beach County School District | The Mosaic Group | Junior Achievement | The Jewish Community Center of the Greater Palm Beaches | Palm Beach State College Upward Bound| Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Delta Academy | Alpha Phi Alpha Farternity Men of Tomorrow | Girl Scouts of Southeast Florida | Poinciana Day School | Churches and more!
"Etiquette is more than knowing which fork to use, it's about equipping youth to achieve excellence, to make choices that will
lead them in a positive direction." -
Speaking Engagement & Book Signings
Preparing Young Women to be Professionally Poised and Polished
If your organization, college or highschool wants to host a Speaking Engagement & Book Signing, please email
. Include the following information: Names of Organization/College, Contact Person, Full Address, Area Code, Phone Number and Budget. Must have a minimum of 25 young ladies, ages 15-25 years old. Must submit request at least one month in advance of your desired date. Ms. Powery, is available to travel across the country for book signing requests. To secure your request around Holidays, make your request as soon as possible.
If you are a business women, entrepreneur, or a women who wants to empower her self to move to the next level, then look no further, this book is equipped with 25 powerful chapters
Becoming a Gentleman
A must-read for African American boys, parents, clergy and family members involving self-confidence, relationships, gangs, dealing with anger, and manners. My contributing chapter is "Becoming A Gentleman", tips on social etiquette, prom etiquette, first and lasting impression, being confidents, speaking and communicating properly, and Do's and Don'ts to dinning etiquette.
TV Interview on “Expect Your Miracle
Interviewed by Pastor Thomas and Prophetress Thomas