Creator: Hester, Yolanda
Creator: Dickerson, Carl
Biographical / Historical
Owner of Dickerson Employee Benefits.
For the Dickerson interview, the interviewer also read a number of articles about Dickerson and his company in local, national,
and trade publications, including the Los Angeles Sentinel, the Los Angeles Times, Black Enterprise and the Los Angeles Business
The interviewer prepared a timed log of the audio recording of the interview. The interviewee was given the opportunity to
review the log in order to supply missing or misspelled names and to verify the accuracy of the content but made no changes.
Scope and Contents
Interview Place: Carl Dickerson's office.
SESSION 1 (8/8/2017)
Birth—Family home—Father's background—Young Christians of Allegheny County—Earning money—Working for a local shop owner who
was a Jewish émigré —Mother's background—Philanthropic activities—Childhood home—Religion—Discovering Uncle Bill's sexual
orientation—The world of gambling.
SESSION 2 (8/29/2017)
Childhood jobs—Saving money—Shoe shine business—Selling newspapers—-Owned businesses in Duquesne, Pennsylvania—Real estate—More
on working for the Jewish émigré shop owner and learning about the Holocaust from him.
SESSION 3 (9/12/2017)
Father's involvement in the Steel Workers Union—Union activity—Attending college—Post-graduation jobs—Road trip to Alaska—Denied
a hotel room in Des Moines, Iowa—Racism in Las Vegas—Living in Berkeley, California—Working in academia—Moving to Los Angeles—Getting
a job in the insurance business—Managing the band Shango and the entertainment business—Starting his insurance business in
SESSION 4 (9/26/2017)
A brief stint in the dry-cleaning business—Marries in 1964—Interracial unions—Insurance business and honing selling techniques—Shifting
to health insurance—Purchasing property in Echo Park and starting a business—Working with ethnic markets—Staffing—Expansion—Meets
the consul general of China—L.A Riots.
SESSION 5 (10/10/2017)
Expense in the insurance business—Insurance as a financial tool—Building relationships is key—International projects—The Affordable
Care Act—Policy changes and the history of health insurance—Workers' compensation—Technology—Succession—Advice to younger
self—Significance of Black business ownership.