Major events like the civil rights movement and women’s movement would not have been possible without the ideas and efforts of Black women. Yet, Black women are rarely acknowledged or praised for the many contributions they have made to these struggles for liberation.
In remembering these pioneering, fearless, and brilliant women, we honor their legacy and are reminded of the radical thought and courage required to create change and end white supremacy.
From this Sankofa moment, hopefully we will be inspired to be more critical of oppressive systems and more determined and purpose-driven in our everyday actions.
Ella Baker was a radical and an organizer, a behind-the-scenes force who propelled the civil rights movement. Although the most prominent figures at the NAACP were male, Baker was the main reason the organization proliferated and strengthened.
More interested in action than glory, Baker could always be found in the field empowering people to become leaders and speak truth to power.
She was associated with several organizations from the civil rights era and was influential in the launch of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee in April 1960.
An example of her transcendent views was her approach to leadership and power: She focused on providing everyday citizens with the tools and resources to campaign for issues that were important to them.