Dr. Charles W. Ambrose, Jr. was the first West Virginian to serve in the capacity of National Councilor.
It will be reported in this issue that Brother John T. Cowl of Roger Sherman Council No.1 of Wheeling, WV, was elected to the office of National Councilor in 1873, but for unknown reasons, he did not show up for the next National Council session nor was the tax paid on the WV membership therefore the State Council was suspended, the office of National Councilor was declared vacant, and a new national councilor was elected and installed.
Dr. Charles W. Ambrose, Jr., was born May 15, 1906, in Morgan County, WV. He attended Morgan County schools and graduated from Shepherd College in 1935. The same year marked his entry into the ministry in the Methodist Church. While in the pursuit of his chosen field he received graduate work from the Emory University in the State of Georgia. Interspersed in this busy schedule, Brother Ambrose performed twelve years of teaching duties in various public schools.
Dr. Ambrose became a member of Berkeley Springs council in 1928 where he advanced rapidly in its fraternal work. He attended his first State Session in 1936, where he was recognized for his leadership qualities. He was elected State Councilor in 1940. As State Councilor he served with dignity and resourcefulness. The first National Session attended by Brother Ambrose was in 1943. He was appointed Chaplain in 1950 and was re-elected to the same office in 1951 and again in 1953. His diligent work and popularity was rewarded by his being elected to the office of National Vice Councilor in 1955 and then elevated to the office of National Councilor in 1957. He served this high office with honor and distinction as was his custom with all assignments and duties that he accepted.
The highlight of his service to the Order was being privileged to preside over the first National Session to be held in his native State of WV. At this National Session, Brother Ambrose hosted the visit of a national dignitary, J. Edgar Hoover, director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and presented the Order's "Citizen of the Year" award on behalf of all members to Mr. Hoover. It was at this National Session that an honorary degree of Doctor of Divinity was bestowed upon Brother Ambrose by the Morris Harvey College making the year of 1959 a very memorable and important year for both the Order and Dr. Charles W. Ambrose, Jr.