Tiffany Pettus – Arkansas Martin Luther King, Jr. Commission Executive Assistant & Agency Historian
Photography by Lori Sparkman Photography
I am a Little Rock native, the second of seven children. My mother taught me how to read at the age of three. She would read me stories and my father and I would read the back of album covers together and play songs. By the time I was five, I had memorized the songs on three albums. I have a Bachelor of Arts degree in Speech, Theater, and Communications and Spanish from the University of Central Arkansas, and a Masters of Arts in Journalism from the University of Arkansas, Little Rock. I am bilingual and fully literate in Spanish- I speak, read and write fluently. I have worked with several agencies teaching classes in Spanish, including the Little Rock Police Department and MEMS Ambulance services.
I am a natural teacher and speaker, I taught Spanish in public school prior to coming to the Commission and I am the daughter of two teachers; my mother is an educational consultant who taught public school for forty years. My father taught electronics to soldiers during the Vietnam War and repaired electrical systems in warplanes. My background is in media, education, and working with the Latino community as an interpreter and advocate within the educational and juvenile justice systems.
I enjoy hearing and reading a good story. I admire Charles Osgood and groundbreaking writers such as Rod Sterling. I am drawn to stories that capture resilience and the human experience. The last book I read was Faith of My Fathers by the late Senator John McCain.
I am a passionate doll collector! I have more than one hundred dolls in my multicultural collection which includes the likenesses of women I admire like Farrah Fawcett, Maya Angelou, Princess Leia, and Mexican painter Frida Kahlo. I’m also a historian of Latin American history and Rock and Roll music. I have lectured respectively on all three topics (doll collecting, Latin American History, Rock and Roll Music).
My favorite quote is a scripture, Psalm 37:25, “I was young and now I’m old but I have never seen the righteous forsaken or his seed begging bread.” This is a testament to the faithfulness of God. As we get older, seasons of life change but God is always faithful and he never changes.
I learned this valuable advice from my mom – “leave no stone unturned.” I started volunteering with the Arkansas Martin Luther King Jr Commission in 2011. I was asked to serve as the Mistress of Ceremonies for a program, the Nonviolence Youth Summit, VI in Hope Arkansas. I was so impressed with Mr. Scarbrough’s vision, I graciously accepted a full-time position as Executive Assistant to Mr. Scarbrough and Agency Historian. Within my job capacity, I conduct historical research for programs and develop media content. I have served as the agency’s Mistress of Ceremonies.