Shirley Chisholm: Unbought and Unbossed

Shirley Anita Chisholm (November 30, 1924–January 1, 2005) was the first African American woman elected to Congress. She represented New York’s 12th congressional district from 1969 to 1983. She served seven terms and championed anti-poverty programs and educational reform. She was a founding member of the Congressional Black Caucus and the National Women's Political Caucus. In 1972, Chisholm became the first woman to seek the presidential nomination from one of the two major political parties. Although her bid was unsuccessful, her candidacy enabled her to raise issues of importance to African Americans and women and to forge the way for others. “The door is not open yet,” she said, “but it is ajar.”

Because of Her Story