Tag Archives | Steele family

In Memoriam: Emily Spencer DeCosta and Janet D. Hicks

The Avery Research Center would like to celebrate the lives and accomplishments of two supporters, Emily Spencer DeCosta and Janet D. Hicks.

Emily Spencer DeCosta was born in 1923 in Washington, D.C. to James Spencer and Evie Carpenter Spencer.  In 1942, Emily received her bachelors degree from Virginia State College; in 1943, she earned a master’s degree from the University of Michigan.  She taught English at Virginia State College for three years and while there, she met Herbert A. DeCosta, Jr.

In 1946, Emily married Herbert DeCosta and began working for his construction company as the bookkeeper, office manager, and corporate secretary from 1947 until her retirement in 1985.  Emily and Herbert had two children, Gail Spencer DeCosta and Margaret Craft DeCosta.

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