Resident Spotlight: Dorothy D. Butler
Mrs. Dorothy Butler was born March 16, 1911 in Glencoe Louisiana to Martha Taylor and John Dennis.
She was the youngest of three siblings. She was only two years of age when her father passed away and her mother could not afford to take care of her, Mrs. Dorothy went to live at Sager Brown Orphanage in Baldwin (now UMCOR). While there she learned to cook and take care of the laundry.
Although she was raised in an orphanage she remained very close to her mother who was a seamstress and she taught Mrs. Dorothy to sew. She learned from an early age how to work hard, having many chores including feeding chickens and chopping wood.
She married Clarence Guienze at the age of 18 and they had two children. Clarence John Guienze and Lavera Brent. Clarence is now 89 years of age. He is a retired Federal social worker living in New Jersey. Lavara passed away, but was one of the first African American female police officers in Franklin. Mrs. Dorothy also has four grandchildren, five great grandchildren and eight great great grandchildren.
She recalls her first job was a shirter in a pressing shop. She was able to send her son to college from the money she earned from this job. She later went on to work for the late Dr. Larry Mouch, who, according to Ms. Dorothy recognized her abilities. He sent her to take a nursing course as the former St. Anne’s Hospital (now Franklin Police Department) and she began doing private duty nursing. She also furthered her training at the Vocational School in Morgan City and became a certified nursing aide.
She was a member of the first Broussard Harris Park Board and in 2008 received the Black Achiever’s Award from Broussard Harris. She was also president of one of the first PTA’s at the former Franklin Negro High School. She has always been an advocate to her children and grandchildren for getting their education.