The Honorable Vel R. Phillips
Wisconsin's Legendary Lady of Many First
Velvalea Rodgers "Vel" Phillips was born February 18, 1924, and is truly a Wisconsin treasure. Phillips is a former Attorney who served as a local official in Milwaukee on the City Common Council. Phillips also served as a judge in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and as Secretary of State of Wisconsin, often as the first woman and/or African-American in her position.
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Dr. Howard L. Fuller
Distinguished Professor of Education
Dr. Howard Fuller was born January 14, 1941, and became a well known a civil rights activist, education reform advocate, and academic. From 1991 to 1995, Fuller served as superintendent of Milwaukee Public Schools. Furthermore, Fuller is recognized for his community organizing work he did in Durham, North Carolina as an employee of Operation Breakthrough, and as a co-founder of the Malcolm X Liberation University in 1969. Today Fuller is a distinguished professor of education, and founder/director of the Institute for the Transformation of Learning at Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
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Congresswoman Gwen S. Moore
United States Representative (WI)
Gwendolynne Sophia "Gwen" Moore was born April 18, 1951 and is currently the U.S. Representative for Wisconsin's 4th congressional district, serving since 2005. She is a member of the Democratic Party. Making her the first African American elected to Congress from the State of Wisconsin. In 2016, Congresswoman Moore was elected by her colleagues to serve in the leadership of the Congressional Black Caucus as Caucus Whip. Congresswoman Moore attended North Division High School in Milwaukee, where she served as Student Council President. She served in the Wisconsin State Senate from 1993-2004. Prior to her election to the Senate, Congresswoman Moore served two consecutive terms in the Wisconsin State Assembly from 1989-1992.
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Arthur L. Jones
Milwaukee's First African-American Chief of Police
Chief Arthur Jones was sworn in as Milwaukee's 16th Chief of Police, and the first African-American to serve in this capacity, on November 15, 1996. He began his career as a police officer in October, 1967. He served as the Deputy Inspector of Police in charge of the Special Operations Bureau prior to his appointment as Chief. He served as the Deputy Inspector of Police in charge of the Special Operations Bureau prior to his appointment as Chief. He served in several other capacities including Lieutenant of Detectives assigned to the Special Assignment Division, primarily responsible for protecting the Mayor
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Annette Polly Williams
African-American Trailbrazer Politician
Annette Polly Williams was born January 10, 1937 in Belzoni, Mis., Later Williams graduated from North Division High School and earned a Bachelor of Science from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee in 1975. Williams was elected into the office of State Assembly District 10 Representative in 1980. School choice trailblazer Annette Polly Williams, remained in that office for twenty years. When Williams announced that she would not be running for an 11th term in 2011, she had become the longest-serving female and African-American representative of either house in Wisconsin history. Williams was a pivotal advocate for parental school choice a project that uses government funds to assist low-income families in accessing private school education as an alternative to that available in public schools. In 1989, she authored the Milwaukee Parental Choice Program (MPCP) as the first school choice legislation in United States history. After successfully passing MPCP, the public often referred to Williams as “The Mother of School Choice.”
Marvin E. Pratt
African-American Milwaukee Politian Pioneer
Marvin E. Pratt was born May 26, 1944 in Dallas, Texas and later moved to Milwaukee. Pratt is an American politician who served as the first acting African-American mayor of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, in 2004. In 1972, after graduating from Marquette University, Pratt became an intern for Former Mayor Henry Maier and then starting climbing a ladder of local government and making history in the process. Holding positions for several years as President of the Milwaukee Common Council, Mayor of Milwaukee, and interim Milwaukee County Executive.
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Fourth Prime Minister of Israel
Golda Meir was an Israeli politician born on May 3, 1898, in Kiev, Russia. She and her family immigrated to Milwaukee, Wisconsin, where she became an active Zionist. Graduated and attended North Division. From the 1940s through the 1960s, Meir worked for the Israeli government in various roles including as Minister of Labor and Foreign Minister. In 1969, party factions appointed her as the country’s fourth Prime Minister, thereby also becoming the world’s third woman with that title. She died in Jerusalem on December 8, 1978.
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Donald B. Jackson
Milwaukee's First African-American Fire Captain & Chief
Donald Jackson was born in 1940 in Milwaukee, WI. Educated in Milwaukee Public Schools and graduated from North Division High School in 1958. Graduated with Bachelors Degree from the University of Milwaukee. Jackson worked for the Milwaukee Fire Department for over 30 years. In the process, Jackson became the first African-American to be promoted and serve in levels of Fire Captain, Battalion Chief, Deputy Chief and lastly Assistant Chief. Furthermore, Jackson has hugely given back to inner city communities and Milwaukee Public Schools. Jackson has been volunteer and huge presence at the Lavernway Boys & Girls Club for 20 plus years. He is also a member of other organizations such as, The Milwaukee Frontiers, Milwaukee Board of Zoning Appeals, The NDHS Alumni Association and many more.
Reuben K. Harpole, Jr.
Milwaukee Civil Rights Activist & Iconic Historian
Reuben K. Harpole, Jr. was born on September 4, 1934, in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and graduated from North Division High School. Harpole earned his B.S. degree in elementary education in 1978 from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Harple served at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee School of Continuing Education for 31 years. He was a senior outreach specialist at the University Center for Urban Community Development. Working for the Helen Bader Foundation he helped spearheaded 758 grants totaling more than $6.4 million dollars. In 2007, he established the Reuben K. Harpole, Jr. Education Scholarship at the UW-Milwaukee, which has given $19,000 in the college education of young African American men interested in teaching.Harpole served as a civil rights worker and community leader who led development efforts for several Milwaukee institutions.