Daisy Bates was an American civil rights activist, publisher and writer who played a leading role in the Little Rock integration crisis in 1957. Before that, Bates and her husband started their own newspaper in 1941 called the Arkansas State Press. The paper became a voice for civil rights even before the nationally recognized movement.
Bates worked tirelessly until her death in 1999. After moving to Washington, D.C. in the 1960s, she served on the Democratic National Committee and also served in the administration of President Lyndon B. Johnson, working her magic on anti-poverty programs. In her home state of Arkansas, it has been established that the third Monday in February is ‘George Washington’s Birthday and Daisy Gatson Bates Day,” an official state holiday.