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President's Office | Letter Re: Rosa Parks’ Passing

Rosa Parks: Remembering Her Legacy

TO: The Trinity Community

FR: President Patricia McGuire

Please take a minute before this week ends to stop and think about the legacy that Rosa Parks leaves not only for the nation and world, but for our lives at Trinity. She died last Monday, a true hero for this nation, an icon of the civil rights movement and the worldwide struggle for human rights. Her example was all the more compelling because of the absolute quiet confidence, integrity and faith she carried with her throughout her life.

I propose that we conduct a special remembrance of her legacy on December 1 this year—fifty years to the day from the momentous date when Rosa Parks was arrested for refusing to give up her seat on a bus in Montgomery, Alabama to a white man who demanded that she do so. I invite suggestions from the Trinity community of the best way to create a meaningful day of remembrance and new learning about the meaning of her courageous actions. She was a woman who truly sparked a revolution—the kind of woman who is an exemplar of our ideals at Trinity. What can we take from her example? How can we ensure that the community of Trinity will always remember what Rosa Parks meant to the cause of justice and freedom for all people in this nation?

Please send me your ideas, and perhaps we can gather some day in the next week or two to discuss the concept. I particularly ask that this year’s student government, clubs and organizations, who are doing such a great job sponsoring so many programs, might think of ways to contribute to a December 1 program.

Rita Dove wrote this about Rosa Parks in an article about her in the June 14, 1999 Time magazine:

“At the end of this millennium (and a particularly noisy century), it is the modesty of Rosa Parks’ example that sustains us. It is no less than the belief in the power of the individual, that cornerstone of the American Dream, that she inspires, along with the hope that all of us—even the least of us—could be that brave, that serenely human, when crunch time comes.”

Please think about this and ways we can remember Rosa Parks.


Patricia A. McGuire, President, Trinity, 125 Michigan Ave. NE, Washington, DC 20017
Phone: 202.884.9050   Email: president@trinitydc.edu

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