Photography by Martin W. Kane

JoAnne Smart Drane

Bettye Ann Tillman and JoAnne Smart Drane

In September 1956, JoAnne Smart and Bettye Tillman stepped foot on the campus of Woman’s College – now UNC Greensboro – as the institution’s first African American students. Their four years on campus were marked by courage, strength of character and a commitment to pursuing excellence in education, despite the challenges they faced. Now more than sixty years later, in an interview with UNCG’s Alyssa Bedrosian, UNCG is proud to share the story of JoAnne Smart Drane and remember the life of the late Bettye Ann Davis Tillman

The following are highlights from a recent interview with Drane at her home in Raleigh.