Eddy, Capel Honored by Moore Foundation
The Moore County Community Foundation has named Felton J. Capel and Caroline H. Eddy as the Man and Woman of the Year.
The honorees were praised for their leadership abilities and their knack for bridging socio-economic, racial, and generational gaps to make Moore County a better place during a dinner Thursday night at the Country Club of North Carolina.
"I won't sleep any tonight," said Capel during his acceptance speech. "I am just going to be thinking about where we started and where we have come. I am humbled by this great award you have given me tonight and all the great things you have said about me."
Eddy was equally grateful, accepting the award on behalf of all the volunteers she has worked with over the years.
"I am speechless," she said. "I think I have fooled a lot of people," she added with a smile.
Capel, a Southern Pines resident, is a businessman and civic leader. In 1959, he began working for a direct sales company, Century Metalcraft, selling high-end cookware. What the company didn't realize when they hired him was that Capel was black, but it wasn't long before he was a sales leader.
His success in business led him into civic life, and he was elected to the Southern Pines Town Council in 1959. He was the first black member of the Rotary Club in the county, and he eventually broke other color barriers, along with his good friend, the late Voit Gilmore.
Capel serves on the boards of many local nonprofit organizations and has, along with his wife, Jean, established scholarships at several colleges, including Fayetteville State University. The basketball arena there is named for him.
The Capels have three children: Jeff, Mitchell and Ken.
Eddy, a Moore County native, is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She is currently the executive director of the Sandhills Moore Coalition for Human Care.
She has served as the associate director of the Community Council for the Arts in Kinston, executive director of the Arts Council of Moore County and as director of development for the Boys and Girls Clubs of Moore County.
She and her husband, Ben, have three children: Laura, also a UNC graduate, lives in Asheville; John is a senior at UNC Wilmington; and Matthew is in the 10th grade at Pinecrest High School.
Eddy is the daughter of Norris Hodgkins and the late Sara Hodgkins.
Capel was introduced by his friend, Lewis Hersey, a marketing professor at Fayetteville State University, and by his three sons.
Hersey put the moment in context, saying, "No matter what else happens, I am pretty sure I am getting the best end of this deal tonight."
Eddy was introduced by her husband, Ben, and friend Katie Morris a former Woman of the Year honoree.
"Caroline is a role model for so many of us," Morris said. "People all across Moore County in high positions and low conditions consider her their friend."
Eddy's husband called her a "family-oriented, caring" person who can be impetuous and stubborn.
This is the sixth year the Community Foundation has honored a Man and Woman of the Year.
Previous winners attending the banquet were John Dempsey (2004), Bill Smith (2005), Patsy Bonsal (2006), Morris (2007), Jimmy Garner (2007) and Jean Souweine (2008).
Moore County Community Foundation offers two principal services to the county. The foundation operates an endowment fund that distributes annual grants to nonprofits.
It also offers investment management and accounting services that allow individuals to establish a fund for the benefit of a particular nonprofit organization or specific cause which allows that individual to avoid the hassle and expense of using a private foundation.
Contact Tom Embrey at (910) 693-2484 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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