April 27, 2010

Lessons in Tenacity, Hope and Change

Civil rights leader Dorothy Irene Height will be laid to rest following funeral services at the National Cathedral on Thursday. Pictured above on the left Dr. Height, 98 lived a long life and worked hard for racial justice and gender equality in America.  Her memoir Open Wide the Gates of Freedom begins with this phrase:
“Mighty women have been with and for us from the beginning of time.  This is patently true or as a species we would have become extinct centuries before we learned how to use fire or store water.”
During the 1964 Freedom Summer Dr. Height worked to organize “Wednesdays in Mississippi” by mobilizing women across the nation to engage in dialogue about their fears of and hopes for change. A stalwart activist and politician, she continued serving in many leadership roles including President of the National Council of Negro Women and President of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.  Dr. Height collaborated with First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt on human and civil rights, President Eisenhower on public school desegregation and President Johnson to appoint African American women to cabinet leadership roles in government.  Her work has been honored by President Bush, President Clinton and President Obama.  Do you get the gist of her purpose and labor in this life?  Dr. Height’s work spans half a century, she continued worked long days burning midnight oil well into her eighties.  Progress takes time and change is hard work.
A global thinker and mobilzer, Dr. Height offers a blueprint for living with purpose in our lives.  We must continue to take on civil and human rights and through her legacy knowing that tenacity and hope remain at the root of progress.  Above, on the right is a picture of Katie Washington she just became the first African-American woman to be named valedictorian at University of Notre Dame.  From a close-knit nurturing family in Gary, Indiana Katie’s story is starts like Dorothy’s one of humble beginnings.  Dr. Height’s efforts have opened new doors and Miss Washington has worked to make these opportunities her reality. She’s headed to Johns Hopkins School Medicine and will go on to become a physician-scientist making progress in medicine and beyond.  
Share this story with young people in your life.

 "I want to be remembered as someone who used herself and anything she could touch to work for justice and freedom.... I want to be remembered as one who tried." Dr. Dorothy Height #quote via Bishop Vashti McKenzie

April 06, 2010


I have to decided to join forces with a friend in the challenge to focus on making some lifestyle choices and setting goals to help with my weight loss plan.  Over the next eight weeks, I plan to walk and run for a total of 100 miles.  I will continue this activity 2 to 5 miles at a time, going a distance of 12 to 15 miles a week.  From past experience, I know that some weeks and days will be better than others. Staying on course and pushing through the hard times is important.

I'm doing this with a friend whose life is so different from mine that I wonder how well this will work.  We are sharing the same goal, but how she gets there will be vastly different from my plan.  The idea is that we will stay on the path knowing that we can support each other through this stretch of the journey.

I'm a self-confident woman who is committed to living a healthier life by finding balance in doing things that I enjoy. I like outdoor running and walking whether on a nature trail, at the beach or moving through an interesting city neighborhood. I do not like the treadmill, but in the rain it's an option. 

Water activity is another joy. I'm planning to go water aerobics in the coming weeks, but in the meantime will start a strength-training regimen along with the walking and running.

I have made up my mind to keep moving.  What about you?