By MARGALIT FOX, The New York Times, April 20, 2010
Dorothy Height, a leader of the African-American and women’s rights movements who was considered both the grande dame of the civil rights era and its unsung heroine, died on Tuesday in Washington. She was 98.
Paul Hosefros/The New York Times
Dorothy Height in 2003.
United Press International
Ms. Height presented the Mary McLeod Bethune Human Rights Award to Eleanor Roosevelt in New York in 1960.
Ms. Height stood near the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. as he gave his “I Have a Dream” speech in 1963 in Washington.
The death, at Howard University Hospital, was announced jointly by the hospital and the National Council of Negro Women, which Ms. Height had led for four decades. A longtime Washington resident, Ms. Height was the council’s president emerita at her death.
One of the last living links to the social activism of the New Deal era, Ms. Height had a career in civil rights that spanned nearly 80 years, from anti-lynching protests in the early 1930s to the inauguration of President Obama in 2009. That the American social landscape looks as it does today owes in no small part to her work.