Monday, October 13, 2014
Shirley Anita St. Hill Chisholm was an American politician, educator, and author. She was a Congresswoman, representing New York's 12th Congressional District for seven terms from 1969 to 1983. In 1968, she became the first African-American woman elected to Congress. On January 25, 1972, she became the first major-party black candidate for President of the United States and the first woman to run for the Democratic presidential nomination (US Senator Margaret Chase Smith had previously run for the 1964 Republican presidential nomination). She received 152 first-ballot votes at the 1972 Democratic National Convention. Beginning in 1939, Shirley attended Girls' High School in the Bedford–Stuyvesant neighborhood of Brooklyn, a highly regarded, integrated school that attracted girls from throughout Brooklyn. She earned her Bachelor of Arts from Brooklyn College in 1946. There, she won prizes for her debating skills. She was a member of the Delta Sigma Theta sorority. In 1964, Chisholm ran for as a Democratic candidate and was elected to the New York State Assembly. She served four years there.