Every February, in recognition of Black History Month, we’re reintroduced to influential people in our history who have left marks in their respective industries. These people were great. Their courage surpassed their fear and they held steadfast in their fight for justice and equality for the human race. Yet, while we’re constantly reminded of the Dr. Martin Luther Kings, Harriet Tubmans, Malcolms, and Rosa Parks of the past, there are many other Black leaders that often go unrecognized. Their paths were just as difficult and their fights just as courageous.
So as Black History Month gets ready to come to a close, we would like to acknowledge seven of the least recognized women in Black history. Some you may be familiar with by name, but not aware of their stories. Others you will be introduced to for the first time. These women paved the way for other women and blacks in general.
Check out our list of influential Black women who may have missed the mainstream recognition, but nevertheless played a pivotal role in our history.
While we’re constantly reminded of the civil rights leaders who worked in front, those who were behind the scenes often go unrecognized. Ella Baker is one of those people. An active civil rights leader in the 1930s, Ms. Baker fought for civil rights for five decades, working alongside W.E.B Dubois, Thurgood Marshall, and Martin Luther King, Jr. She even mentored well-known civil rights activist, Rosa Parks.
Ella Baker is quoted as saying, “You didn’t see me on television; you didn’t see news stories about me. The kind of role that I tried to play was to pick up pieces or put together pieces out of which I hoped organization might come. My theory is, strong people don’t need strong leaders.”