Celebrating Black History Month 2021: Constance Mitchell

Continuing our celebration of Black History Month, we spotlight Constance (Connie) Mitchell (1928–2018), the first African American woman to be elected to the Monroe County (New York) Legislature.

In 1965, Connie Mitchell walked alongside Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama, in the historic March for Freedom.

Mitchell carried on the fight for freedom and social justice at the local level, fighting for for educational advancement, improved living and working conditions, better employment opportunities, and higher pay for minorities. Far more than words and protests, Mitchell knew that jobs and education would lead to positive change in everyday lives.

Awards and Honors include the Frederick Douglass Medal for outstanding civic engagement by the University of Rochester, and the naming of the Constance Mitchell Concourse at the Monroe County Office Building.

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