Viola was born on January 15, 1948 to the proud parents of Alexander and Mary Ravenel on 81 Hanover Street, Charleston, South Carolina. Her father was a retired Naval Shipyard worker and her mother retired from Superior Laundry. She is the middle child of five. She received her early education at Daniel Jenkins and Mary Ford Elementary school. She went on to Bonds-Wilson High School where she graduated in 1967.
During her early schools years, she worked at Superior from the tender age of 13. She was there until she went to Swinton Laundry. She also worked at Dixie Diner after school. She later went to work for the Naval Station as a telephone operator. In 1982, she went on to the apprenticeship program at Charleston Naval Shipyard as an insulator until their closing. She also worked for AGFA Corporation until she retired in 2008. She is now employed as a caregiver for Homeinstead Senior Care.
Her education includes:
· Tongue Point Job Corps Center, Astoria, Oregan
· Linfield College, McMinniville, Oregon
· Ashworth University, Norcross, GA
· Trident Technical College, Clemente Program
· Charleston Baptist Church Precepts by Precepts Biblical Studies, Ambassador College
· Bible Study Fellowship, International Seminary
She was licensed and ordained at Community Baptist Church.
Civic Activities Include:
· Community Baptist Church where I have served as the President of the Missionary Ministry
· Church teacher
· Junior Usher President
· Senior Choir President and Director
· Financial Secretary
· Youth Ministry Council
· Chairperson and Founder of the J. Z. Gibson Memorial Scholarship Fund
· Associate Minister
· Sunday School Superintendent
Copper River Baptist Association:
· Served as Vice President then President of the Choir that comprised of 26 churches in our association
· Organized and founded the Sensational Ravenel Gospel Singers
· Sensational Traveling Echoes, An All-Male group dating back to 1946 where I sing and serve as secretary and treasurer.
· St James RMUE Church Organized and founded the Gospel Delights Gospel Singers
· Charleston Symphony Gospel Choir, where I sang and served as section leader
· Lowcountry Voices, where I sang and was a member
· Missionary to the Philippines where I ministered to the residences and prepared care packages to all that we fed from village to village
· Program Director for McDougal Correctional Center where I was in charge of bringing program to the center
· Plantations Singers and Spiritual Gospel Singers are Gullah groups that preserves the old songs of the Lowcountry
Received Numerous Award from different organizations spanning over forty years.
Made by acting debut in “The Amen Corner” with Art Forms and Theater concepts, where we did 13 performances.
I consider myself to be dedicated and goal oriented with experience in carrying out duties that are specified by the church, Job and Civic organizations. Proficient in carrying out programs based on the need. Effective in providing leadership and direction to members and encourages them to their highest level.
My favorite scripture is Proverbs 3:5-6:
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.
My favorite song is: “No, Not One”