Washington, D.C.—The progressive movement lost a champion today, and the Center for American Progress lost a dear ally in the work for equality and justice. Dr. Dorothy Height, an iconic civil rights leader, was a pioneer for gender and racial equity and was a beacon of light in some of our nation’s darkest days. She fought until the very end of her distinguished life to ensure equal opportunity for all Americans and equality for the greater human race.
Like many who have gone before her, Dr. Height’s tireless lifelong passion to make our nation live up to its highest ideals of fairness and equal opportunity paved the way for us all to experience this nation unfettered by the chains of discrimination and oppression.
This great woman, often the only woman in the circles of elite, male-dominated civil rights leadership, left her fingerprint on many of the greatest victories of the civil rights movement—from antilynching laws, to desegregation of the armed forces, to equal access to public accommodations. It is in her honor that we continue to advance the values for which she stood and today join the millions of Americans in celebrating her life and contributions.
Erica Williams is the Deputy Director of Progress 2050, a project of the Center for American Progress that develops new ideas for an increasingly diverse America. The project seeks to build a progressive agenda that is more inclusive and reflects the rich racial and ethnic makeup of the nation.