Parks, Rosa, 1913-2005


Parks (née Rosa Louise McCauley) was an African American civil rights activist whose refusal to relinquish her seat on a public bus to a white man precipitated the 1955-56 Montgomery bus boycott in Alabama. In 1957 Parks moved with her husband and mother to Detroit, where from 1965 to 1988 she was a member of the staff of Michigan Congressman John Conyers, Jr. She remained active in the NAACP, and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference established the annual Rosa Parks Freedom Award in her honor. In 1987 she cofounded the Rosa and Raymond Parks Institute for Self Development to provide career training for young people. She was the recipient of numerous awards, including the Presidential Medal of Freedom (1996) and the Congressional Gold Medal (1999). -- Encyclopaedia Britannica

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