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Throughout November, the Crossroads Charlotte Correspondents will spotlight individuals who deserve thanks for what they do to improve the city's social capital.
How Sarah Stevenson connects community:
Activist and Co-Founder, Tuesday Morning Breakfast Forum
When history was made in Charlotte, it’s likely that Sarah Stevenson, 84, was there. A local resident since 1941, Stevenson became passionate about civil rights for all as a parent of students attending public school.
An advocate for achieving equality through education, Stevenson pioneered integrating the local Parent-Teacher Association, eventually becoming the local chapter President. Years later, she became the first African-American woman on the Charlotte school board.
As Stevenson continued to build her legacy in Charlotte, she became Director of the Community Relations Dispute Settlement program in the 1960s, training area police officers and professionals to mediate issues between local citizens. She also continued her work as a leader in organizations such as the National Conference for Christians and Jews (now the Charlotte Coalition for Social Justice) and the Black Political Caucus.
In 1980, Stevenson and other area leaders started the Tuesday Morning Breakfast Forum to provide African-Americans an opportunity to discuss issues with elected and appointed officials. Nearly 30 years later, Stevenson still moderates the Forum every week to a diverse audience at the West Charlotte Recreation Center.
What she thinks our community needs?
“We need better communication, we need to have more respect for each other, and we need to treat each other as God’s people. We need to love each other, and out of that will come issues of education, respect, equality and better treatment for all.”
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