Dolores Dunn Joyner was a former administrative secretary for the School District of Philadelphia.
Joyner died Tuesday, Sept. 4, 2012. She was 83.
She was born Aug. 29, 1929, in Newark, N.J., to the late Paul Dunn Sr. and Alice Butler.
“She had an effervescent personality, was always the great conversationalist and was very witty,” her family said.
“Dolores was never at a loss for words, she always knew the right thing to say.”
She began her early education in the Ewing Park and Trenton school systems. She later attended St. Katherine Drexel’s Holy Providence Catholic Boarding School for minorities in Cornwell Heights where she was baptized Catholic.
During the 1940s, the family moved to Philadelphia, where she attended West Philadelphia Catholic High School for Girls. She graduated from West Catholic in 1947. She joined the Saint Carthage Roman Catholic Church, now St. Cyprian Roman Catholic Church, and was a member for more than 20 years.
She married Robert Joyner on June 4, 1950, at Tinley Temple Church. From this union, two daughters were born.
Joyner began her early career in the performing arts. She was a professional chorus dancer starring with Pearl Bailey in Las Vegas and on Broadway. She also performed at the Cotton Club in Atlantic City. She was one of the original centerfold beauties to be photographed and featured in Jet magazine.
She later became one of the first Black females to be hired as a telephone operator for Bell of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. Joyner worked for the school district for more than 25 years as an administrative secretary until her retirement. There she received numerous awards as an outstanding employee including the business and financial recognition award as “Employee of the Year.”
Joyner was preceded in death by her daughter, Deborah Alice.
She is survived by her daughter, Pamela Marie (Michael); grandsons, Michael and Marcquise; brother-in-law, Samuel P. Joyner; sister-in-law, Constance Dunn; goddaughters, Carla Shabazz and Paula Fleming; cousin and caregiver, Lenora Thompson (Cissy); and other relatives and friends.
Services were held Sept. 13 at St. Cyprian Catholic Church, 525 Cobbs Creek Parkway. Burial was in Fernwood Cemetery.
James L. Morse Funeral Home, Inc. handled the arrangements.