- Civil Rights Activist
- First Female Chairperson of the NAACP
- Founder of the Medgar Evers Institute
From the moment Myrlie Evers-Williams faced the murder of her husband, civil rights activist Medgar Evers, she became a pivotal figure in the civil rights movement. For over three decades, she has fought to carry on his legacy, never relenting in her determination to change the face of race relations in this country.
Channeling her personal tragedy into triumph, Evers-Williams has become a symbol of courage and perseverance, steadfast in her march towards social justice. She made history in becoming the first female chairperson to lead the NAACP. Elected during a tumultuous time when the nation’s oldest civil rights organization was rife with financial troubles and scandal, her leadership rejuvenated the agency, helping ensure its relevance for generations to come.
Evers-Williams founded the Medgar Evers Institute to promote education, training, and economic development while exposing new generations of students to the cause for which her husband died. She was also instrumental in launching “Youth for Unity,” a diversity education program designed to fight injustice and intolerance.
She does not rest, driven by strength and faith, determined not to allow lessons of the past to be forgotten. Aiming to infuse the youth of today with hope, tolerance, and an understanding of the struggles our nation has faced, Evers-Williams encourages everyone to work together: “If we can help them understand the past and encourage them to creatively address today’s human rights challenges, they will be in a much better position to help shape the future.”