Gardening in Stilettos
 
Picture
Looking back at the age of 80, Ms. Horne said:
 
“My identity is very clear to me now. I am a black woman. I’m free. I no longer have to be a ‘credit.’ I don’t have to be a symbol to anybody; I don’t have to be a first to anybody. I don’t have to be an imitation of a white woman that Hollywood sort of hoped I’d become. I’m me, and I’m like nobody else.”

In Memory of Lena Horne
Picture
 
 
"Without community service, we would not have a strong quality of life.  It's the way in which we ourselves grow and develop"  ~Dorothy Height
Picture
Social activist Dorothy Height was born in Richmond, Virginia on March 24, 1912. At an early age, she moved with her family to Rankin,  Pennsylvania.  While in high school, Height was awarded a scholarship to New York University for her oratory skills, where she studied and earned her master's degree.

Height began her career working as a caseworker with the New Your City Welfare Department, but at the age of twenty-five, she began her career as a civil rights activist when she joined the National Council of Negro Women. She fought for equal rights for both African Americans and women, and in 1944 she joined the national staff of the YWCA. She remained active with the organization until, 1977 and while there she developed leadership training programs and interracial and ecumenical education programs. In 1957, Height was named president of the National Council of Negro Women, a position she held until 1977. She also served as National President of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority from 1946 to 1957. She remained active with Delta Sigma Theta Sorority thoughtout her life. While there she developed leadership training programs and interracial and ecumenical education programs. During the height of the civil rights movement of the 1960s, Height organized "Wednesdays in Mississippi," which brought together black and white women from the north and South to create a dialogue of understanding. Leaders of the United States regularly took her counsel, including First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt, and Height also encouraged President Dwight Eisenhower to desegregate schools and President Lyndon B Johnson to appoint African American women to positions in government.

Height has served on a number of committees, including as a consultant on African affairs to the secretary of state, the President's Committee on the Employment of the Handicapped and the President's Committee on the Status of Women. Her tireless efforts for equal rights have earned her the praise and recognition of numerous organizations, as well. She has received the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Freedom From Want Award and the NAACP Springarn Medal. She has also been inducted into the National Women's Hall of Fame. In 2004, Height was awarded the Congressional Gold Medal by President George W. Bush