Cohen on Passing of Civil Rights Pioneer Maxine Smith

April 26, 2013
Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Congressman Steve Cohen (TN-09) today issued the following statement on the passing of Civil Rights pioneer Maxine Smith. The Memphis Congressman also spoke on the House floor about the Civil Rights icon:

“Maxine Smith was the Mother of the Civil Rights Movement in Memphis, having served on the National Board of the NAACP and as the Executive Secretary of the Memphis Branch of the NAACP where she coordinated the desegregation of everything in Memphis from schools to lunch counters to theater seating, and libraries, as well as public accommodations and facilities. Maxine Smith was an unstoppable force during the Civil Rights Movement, not only in Memphis but across America and she should be honored, emulated and revered alongside our nation’s most influential leaders. On a personal level, she guided me as a mentor and a friend and I am humbled by her belief in me, which has given me strength for many years.  Maxine Smith embodied Dr. King’s dream as she, too, could see over the Mountaintop. Please join me in remembering the powerful and important life Maxine Smith lived and keep her in your thoughts and prayers.”