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5:30 PM / Wednesday September 28, 2022

23 Apr 2010

Reflections on Dr. Hooks

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April 23, 2010 Category: Stateside Posted by:

“Dr. Benjamin L. Hooks was among the greatest Americans of the 20th Century. He was a giant of hope and humanity who, as Executive Director and CEO of the NAACP, expanded the circle of opportunity in our nation for millions by greatly accelerating the desegregation of our largest corporations. He was a crusading lawyer—the first Black judge in Tennessee since Reconstruction— who confronted Southern Justice on behalf of the down trodden and oppressed. He was a courageous and committed preacher of the Word who, as chairman of the Leadership Conference for Civil Rights, insisted that our nation acknowledge and respect the dignity of all Americans regardless of race and ethnicity, as well as gender and sexual orientation. He was a great organizer, communicator, and mentor to legions of young leaders who continue to define our nation today. He was simply the greatest living person to have served as Executive Director and CEO of the NAACP. We will miss him dearly”

–NAACP President and CEO Benjamin Todd Jealous

 

“The NAACP is deeply saddened by the passing of Dr. Benjamin L. Hooks. Dr. Hooks led this organization to new heights, and we will continue to honor his legacy by fighting on, in his words with truth, justice and righteousness on our side” … “Not only was Dr. Hooks the NAACP Executive Director and CEO Emeritus but he was a civil rights icon and my mentor and personal friend. He taught me to stand up for what I believe in; even in the face of adversity, and that the struggle for civil and human rights for all Americans never ends. Dr. Hooks was a giant in the civil rights movement, in the NAACP and in my life, it is in his memory and the memory of all the other civil rights soldiers who have passed that I will lead the NAACP into the second century,”

–NAACP Chairman Roslyn M. Brock

 

“Dr. Benjamin L. Hooks was a dynamic NAACP CEO who lifted the organization and by force of personality gave it a heightened presence on the national scene. He performed my wedding ceremony to my wife Pam and was a stalwart advisor during my tenure as Chairman of the NAACP Board of Directors. Dr. Hooks will be much missed,”

— Chairman Emeritus Julian Bond

 

“Dr. Benjamin Hooks helped shape the modern civil rights day movement through his leadership of the NAACP: elevating and energizing the storied organization. With great patriotism, he led the day-to-day efforts to root out discrimination and injustice and worked on behalf of equality and opportunity for all Americans for more than half of a century.

“Dr. Hooks had a remarkable career: as a judge, an FCC Commissioner, and as a minister. He was a man of deep faith and bold convictions. He was also a man of action; in his calm yet determined way, he worked so that our nation would live up to the aspirations of all of its people.

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“I hope it is a comfort to the many who loved Benjamin Hooks that so many grieve their loss and are praying for them in this sad time.”

–U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi

 

“His courage and dedication to the movement are unmatched, as he faced death threats at one extreme, and apathy at the other. He cautioned us never to forget the struggles of our forbearers, and never to take for granted our gains. He challenged us all to be our best, and in his memory we renew our commitment to social and economic justice and personal empowerment.”

–National Urban League President and CEO Marc H. Morial

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