Dr. Cotton was a leader in the Civil Rights movement, and served as Director of Education for the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) from 1960-1968. She became education director of the Citizenship Education Program in 1963, working alongside Septima Clark (see our profile on Day 28 of Women’s History Month). She taught citizenship, literacy, and tactics of nonviolent protest, and traveled throughout the South encouraging Black citizens to register to vote. Dr. Cotton helped James Bevel organize students during the 1963 Birmingham Children’s Crusade. In 1964, she was one of the group of colleagues who traveled to Oslo with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., when he was awarded the Nobel Prize. After her retirement from the SCLC, she became a Head Start director, vice president of field operations at the King Center, and director of student activities at Cornell. In the 1990s, Dr. Cotton began leading workshops and seminars on social change and leadership development. In 2012, she wrote “If Your Back’s Not Bent: The Role of the Citizenship Education Program in the Civil Rights Movement.”
Sanguine Fromage, WERU radio personality since 2005, current host of UpFront Soul, former host of The Nightfly, Off the Wall, Enjoy Yourself, and Sound Travels.
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