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Hattie Leeper, affectionately known as “Chatty Hattie,” blazed trails as the first African American woman on the airwaves in North Carolina. Her remarkable radio journey commenced at Charlotte’s WGIV Radio during the 1950s, where she captivated audiences with her engaging presence and insightful commentary.

As her career blossomed, Leeper’s contributions to broadcasting were duly recognized. She earned prestigious accolades, including induction into both the Black Radio Hall of Fame and the North Carolina Association of Broadcasters Hall of Fame, cementing her legacy as a pioneer in the field.

In 1973, Leeper transitioned from the airwaves to academia, sharing her wealth of knowledge and experience as a Communication instructor at esteemed institutions such as Johnson C. Smith University and Gaston College.

Even after her retirement in 1998, Leeper’s passion for communication and education remained undiminished. She established her own communications school in Charlotte, continuing to mentor and inspire aspiring broadcasters for years to come.