D. Theodore Brownworth, 79, of Chestnut Hill, a former advertising executive, died Sunday, May 22, at the Chestnut Hill Lodge Health & Rehabilitation Center in Wyndmoor of complications from a stroke.
Mr. Brownworth and his wife, Elizabeth, were active in the Philadelphia to Philadelphia Project, said a daughter Victoria.
A 1966 Inquirer article reported that the Universalist Church of the Restoration, a Unitarian-Universalist congregation in East Mount Airy, had set up the project the previous year after three civil rights workers were murdered near Philadelphia, Miss., in 1964. The 1988 movie Mississippi Burning was based on the murders.
"This was a big part of my childhood," Victoria Brownworth said. "That project was something we were all involved in as a family."
The Inquirer article included an interview with one of the five Mississippi African American teenagers the program sponsored so they could spend the summer in the Philadelphia region.
Two of the girls were attending a summer enrichment program at the Penn Charter School, one was at such a program at Abington High School, and one was returning to the region from a summer camp in Massachusetts. The fifth visitor, a young man, was studying masonry at the Opportunities Industrialization Center.
The situation back home was sensitive enough that only one of the teenagers agreed to be interviewed, and she asked that her name not be used.
Mr. Brownworth also was a member and organizer for the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee and the Socialist Workers Party, his daughter said.
"He and my mother organized boycotts and marches in Philadelphia," she said, "and helped organize marches in Mississippi."
Born in East Falls, she said, "he did weekend weddings for my grandfather" for Brownworth Photography, which the family ran for three generations until Mr. Brownworth's father died in the 1970s.
Mr. Brownworth earned a bachelor's degree in architecture at the University of Pennsylvania in 1953 and served in the Navy.
From 1960 to 1968, he was a marketing director at N.W. Ayer & Son, the Philadelphia advertising firm, before becoming a senior account executive there.
From 1972 to 1977, Mr. Brownworth was vice president for advertising for the Philadelphia office of Big Brothers Big Sisters, his daughter said.
Between Ayer and Big Brothers, he was a vice president for advertising at Lincoln Bank and at First Pennsylvania Bank, she said.
Besides his daughter Victoria, Mr. Brownworth is survived by another daughter, Jennie Goldenberg; three grandchildren; and his partner, Meredith Kane. His former wife, Elizabeth, died in 2004.
A Funeral Mass will be said at 10 a.m. Saturday, June 11, at St. Mark's Church, 1625 Locust St.