The Sterling Land Trust

Click here to edit subtitle

The Sterling Land Trust Board is made up of alumni of Sterling High School and residents of Sterling who saw the downward turn their beloved neighborhood had taken and decided to make a difference. Stakeholder volunteers are also on the board.


The Board sees itself as a way to amplify the voices of Sterling community members in the decision-making about what gets done in their neighborhood. Together, they bring wisdom and diverse experience to this organization. The Sterling Land Trust Board works toward fulfilling the legacy of Sterling High School by striving for achievement and the utmost quality in every endeavor.

Sterling Land Trust Board Member Profiles

Mack Lockhart, President/ Sterling High School Alumni

Mr. Lockhart is a Greenville native and graduate of Sterling High School (Class of '64), yet currently resides in Mauldin, SC.  Mack has been a leader and accomplished Real Estate Appraiser and Assessment Specialist for over 30 years with service to Greenville County, SC, Mecklenburg County, NC (Charlotte, NC), Richmond, VA where he served as the City Assessor.  He has served as member of American Legion, VFW, and Knights of Columbus and is a proud member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc.  He has served as Past President of the Local National Kidney Foundation Chapter, Vice Chairman of the Richmond Chapter of Black Public Officials, and is currently the President of the National Pan Hellenic Council.  Mr. Lockhart currently works as Vice-President of Commercial Appraisals Review Department for Carolina First Bank (A division of TD Bank NA).  As President of the Sterling Land Trust, he is using his expertise to help the Sterling community rebuild the sense of community and pride he holds for its history in his heart.

Reverend Allen Freeman, Vice President/ Sterling Resident
Reverend Freeman is Sterling resident, a graduate of Sterling High School, and a graduate of the University of Southern California.  Reverend Freeman has served in the United States Army, having spent many tours of duty overseas in the Middle East.  He has won many awards, including a NHC Award given to him for his work in Iran. Reverend Freeman is a 33rd Degree Master Mason, served on the Board for GCRA, N.H.C., a Commander for the Greenville Shriner's, member of the VFW, American Legion, NAACP, and beyond.  As Vice-President of the Sterling Land Trust, he intends to use his experience and wisdom to ensure Sterling and its current and future residents have opportunities for ownership and wealth building that he had.

Bobby Miller, Board Member; Chair, Exec. Committee; Financial Advisor / Sterling High School Alumni

Mr. Miller is a graduate of Sterling High School (Class of '62) and was among the high school's elite basketball stars at the time.  He has spent 4 years in the U.S. Navy; a graduate from Rodger Williams University, before beginning a 30-year career in the banking industry.  Most recently Mr. Miller was a Commercial Loan Officer and Vice-President of Wachovia National Bank.  As a member of the Sterling Land Trust board, Bobby intends to help the community develop its full potential regarding residential housing and the development of small business/commercial opportunities.

Andrea Sligh Crockett, Secretary / Sterling Resident

Mrs. Crockett is a resident of Sterling and a homeowner.  Andrea is a former rural letter carrier for the U.S. Postal Service, a graduate of Greenville High Academy; received her Associates Degree in Business Administration from Greenville Technical College; received SC Insurance license after attending Chattanooga Academy of Insurance; and Drafting Certification from Daniel PRSEC.  She is on the board of Habitat for Humanity, the BTCC Women Building Women organization, and Church Administrator for Breeze Tabernacle Christian Church, which is a community, based church in Sterling.  Andrea is a mother of nine children and it's her hope through the Sterling Land Trust that the families and youth in the community have a safe, healthy, and family friendly neighborhood.


Dorothy (Dot) Russell, Board Chair / Sterling Resident

Ms. Russell is a resident of Sterling and currently employed at BB&:T.  She has worked for MCI, Greenville Housing Authority, and Alston Wilkes Society prior to her role at BB&:T.  Dorothy is the President of the Sterling Neighborhood Association, guiding the new direction and empowerment of the residents involved.  Dorothy is an active member of the Healthy Communities Initiative begun by Bon Secours St. Francis Health System as well as an early participant in the hospital's Community Garden program through the Community Ministries Department.  As a board member of the Sterling Land Trust, Dot looks forward to ensuring the connection between the residents and this organization stays strong, transparent, and aligned to meet the needs and opportunities into the foreseeable future. Ms. Russell is the Chairwoman of the Sterling Land Trust.


James Thompson, Board Member / Sterling High School Alumni

Mr. Thompson is a graduate of Sterling High School (Class of '69).  He is also a graduate from Norfolk State University.  He has spent 14 years in management at Milliken and Company before moving into an human resources career with Sara Lee, first as Director of Human Resources, then later as VP of Human Resources out of Lexington, SC. Today, Mr. Thompson and his wife both live in the Upstate after he accepted a position as Director of Human Resources at Dispozo Products which was later acquired and the name changed to D&:W Fine Pack. He is on the Board of Greenville March of Dimes, S.C. &: N.C. Industry Liaison Group, Advisory Board Member to GHS (Hillcrest, Sterling High School Alumni Association, and NAACP.  As a member of the Sterling Land Trust, James intends to bring his expertise in leveraging and organizing people and talents towards helping the community residents best meet the opportunities ahead.


S.T. Peden, Board Member

Founder, Chairman and CEO of the Minority Economic Development Institute Inc. (MEDII), a Non-Profit, Tax Exempt, Economic Development Organization, which is headquartered in Greenville and serves the 10-county Upstate region of South Carolina. Mr. Peden is a native of Greenville, South Carolina. He is a graduate of South Carolina State (College) now University where he earned a BS Degree in Business Administration with a concentration in Economics and Accounting. Peden began his Supplier Diversity career in 1989 as a volunteer with the Greenville Chamber of Commerce. Mr. Peden had a prestigious 34 year career with GE. Upon retirement from GE, Peden was selected by Institutional Resources, the Program Management firm which managed the School Construction Program for the School District of Greenville County, where he coordinated the diversity outreach initiative to minority and women owned architectural, engineering and construction firms from 2003 to 2007. He then founded the Minority Enterprise Development Institute, whose mission is to promote the awareness of, development and growth of minority owned businesses, which will enhance their inclusion in the economic development of Upstate South Carolina, was founded in 2007.  Mr. Peden is a Furman University Riley Institute Diversity Fellow, having completed the South Carolina Diversity Leaders Initiative Upstate in 2004. In May 2009, Mr. Peden was presented the Calder Ehrmann Diversity Advocate Award by the Riley Institute. In October 2010, the Spartanburg South Carolina Chamber of Commerce presented its 2010 Minority Enterprise Development (MED) Week Minority Business Advocate of the Year Award and one of its Economic Champion Awards to Mr. Peden. 


Peggy Baxter, Board Member / Sterling High School Alumni

Mrs. Baxter is a graduate of Sterling High School.  Her undergraduate and post-graduate work was completed Colorado, after which she went on to have a career in Healthcare Administration at the Alameda County of California's NAPA Children's Psychiatric Hospital as their Lead Social Worker for nearly 30 years.  While in California, she was awarded a top State of California Legislative Award.  Locally, Peggy has been involved in the NAACP, Urban League, American Cancer Society, Friends of the Reedy, and Bon Secours St. Francis Healthy Community Initiative as a Senior Advocate.  Peggy's most recent achievement was the construction of Sterling's (and West Greenville's) first Organic Community Garden on property in Sterling she grew up on as a child (Odessa Street)!  As a member of the Sterling Land Trust, Peggy intends to see that the empowerment, voices, and needs of seniors are well represented in the community.

Angel Sligh, Board Member and Sterling Resident

Biography coming soon!


Sylvia Vandross, Board Member and Sterling Resident

Mrs. Vandross is a resident in the City side of Sterling while she is currently employed as the Director of the Sterling Community Center, operated by Greenville County Recreation District.  She serves as Neighborhood Liaison for many churches and other organizations that are working with the residents in Sterling.  She is very active in her church and has her pulse on some of the issues and challenges faced by residents and families in Sterling.  As a member of the Sterling Land Trust, Sylvia intends to help the community residents learn more about how best to make effective use of the resources and opportunities available to them for affordable housing and empowerment.