Mary McLeod Bethune, 1875 – 1955, was born to emancipated slaves in South Carolina. She founded the Daytona Normal and Industrial Institute focused on educating African American girls. Understanding the power of Girlfriends, she founded the National Council of Negro Women (NCNW); pressured the American Red Cross to integrate and the Secretary of War to commission black women as officers inthe Women’s Army Auxiliary Corps. Her statue was the first depicting any woman or African American in the nation’s capital.
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