Deirdre M. Bourgeois
Deirdre was born in New Orleans, LA and was the oldest of three children. She was the mother of one adult son, Gavin.
She graduated from Xavier Prep High School and attended Xavier University for one year before going to a business college and acquiring a Certificate for Executive Administration.
After a few years in the administrative field, she enrolled in the New Orleans Skills Training Center and received an Associate’s Degree in Mechanical Design. Furthering her education remained a goal so she attended The Institute of Electronic Technology and received an Associate’s Degree in Electronic Technology.
In 1986, she relocated to Atlanta, Georgia seeking employment due to the “oil bust” of the 80s and attained employment with General Dynamics Electric Boat Division for four years where she was a CADD Operator [Draftsperson on the computer].
Ms. Bourgeois advanced her career by working at MARTA for fifteen years in several departments and titles. Her last position, before taking early retirement, was as a transportation planner where she was able to interact with the public pertaining to their transportation needs.
Ms. Bourgeois has always had a heart for people and in her retirement, she started a non-profit organization to meet the housing needs of special populations, such as Emancipated Foster Youth, the elderly and low-income. She was also a Georgia real estate professional and a real estate investor.
Rev. Dr. Phyllis was born in Detroit, Michigan and moved to Valdosta, Georgia when she was 2 years old. She graduated from Thomasville High School and attended Valdosta State University, where she received her Bachelors and Masters Degrees in Special Education. She was initiated into the Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. Rev. Dr. Phyllis taught for 40 years, retiring from Mill Creek Middle School in Cherokee County, where in 2013 she was named “Teacher of the Year”.
In 2004, Rev. Dr. Phyllis joined Turner Chapel AME Church and accepted her call into the Ministry in 2011. She was active in several ministries at Turner and used her gifts as an Educator to teach Sunday School and Bible Study and later became the Discipleship Purpose Head giving leadership to that ministry while continuing to teach.
Rev. Dr. Phyllis learned to play the piano as a little girl and was also a great singer and a member of the Georgia Mass Choir. As a member of the Georgia Mass Choir she was privileged to sing on a CD with the renowned gospel artist Kirk Franklin. During the early 90’s, rev, Dr. Phyllis served as the pianist for St. Timothy AME Church in Valdosta, Georgia.
Rev. Dr. Phyllis “served” STING, Inc. consistently. When she retired she committed herself to “serving” with us. She had her own Nonprofit organization, “The Healing Stations” which “served” Adult learners. In addition to driving for us on the last 4 College Tour Road Trips, she collaborated with us on a number of our events. She attended most of our events and some of our Leadership Sessions, as her schedule permitted. She critiqued our essays for our students, donated to our events and prayed for your children constantly. As my Spiritual Mentor and Prayer Partner, she has prayed for our STING families and youth. She also touched base with our College Students (Alumni) from time to time.
Rev Dr. Phyllis traveled with us on our last STING trip was in April, 2019 when she drove and chaperoned for us on the Spring Break College Road Trip.
Rashae’ Aaliyah Kayla Marshall-Douglin – April 3, 2003-January 19, 2023
“Aaliyah” Douglin became a member of STING, Inc. while she was in elementary school. Aaliyah was very active in STING and participated in most of our activities/events. Fall Retreats, College Tours, Vision Board events, Shoebox Projects, as well as performing at Christmas Parties at Galleria Mano Senior Living. Aaliyah served as a page for State Representative Michael Smith as well as participated in the Steve and Marjorie Harvey’s Girls Who Rule The World program. Aaliyah served as an I Love Me Ambassador and a Girls Who Brunch Tour Ambassador. She was a member of Delta GEMS, Elite Women of Excellence (EWOE) and the Powder Springs Community Taskforce (PSCT). Aaliyah was a talented athlete, actress and dancer. She earned a two time Junior Olympics All-American while a member of Cobb Police Athletic League (PAL). Aaliyah was active throughout her life in church groups and activities. She participated in Approved Women Are Not Ashamed (AWANA) at Grace Baptist Church. At Word of Faith Family Worship Cathedral, she participated in Voices of Light, 212, and Ignite Youth Ministry. At Turner Chapel African Methodist Episcopal Church, Aaliyah served on the Young People’s Division (YPD) Executive Board as well as participated in the Young Daughters of the King (YPK) Step Ministry. Aaliyah also took acting lessons from Zonum Media Group.
Aaliyah began “Aaliyah’s Book Drive” to ensure youth in her community would have books to read where she yielded hundreds of books, which she donated to Calvary Children’s home. This had become an annual event as she would collect books and give them away at the Powder Springs Community Taskforce’s Back2School Bash. The first book drive after her passing was at Union Chapel Church Academy in Huntsville Alabama during the STING, Inc.’s Spring Break College Tour Road Trip. Books were distributed to the young students.
Aaliyah had been a caregiver for her mom, Deborah Douglin, since her Mom was diagnosed with cancer in 2015.
At the time of her passing, Aaliyah was enrolled in Chattahoochee Technical College with immediate plans to move to Texas to attend Texas Southern University.