Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Renowned Activist Dorothy Pitman Hughes Continues Her Work On The First Coast

By mayoral proclamation, Wednesday, Oct. 2, is "Dorothy Pitman Hughes Day" in Jacksonville.

Today is also the legendary activist's 75th birthday.

Hughes will celebrate tonight with a party in Springfield featuring her old friend, feminist icon Gloria Steinem.

The two became friends and colleagues in New York in the early 1970s, working together on issues of "racism, classism, and sexism," as Hughes puts it.

Among many other accomplishments, Hughes founded the first battered women's shelter in New York City.

After relocating to Jacksonville several years ago, she continued her activism. Tonight's event is a fundraiser for a Northside community garden project.

"I've seen the kind of poverty here among women and children that really can be corrected," she Hughes said.

"I think we need to revive the kind of movement that we had years ago.  So what we're doing now is building these gardens, and teaching people how to feed themselves."

Hughes is operating two gardens on the Northside and hopes to expand the operation.

Click here for more information on tonight's event.

You can follow Melissa on Twitter @MelissainJax.

Melissa Ross joined WJCT in 2009 with 20 years of experience in broadcasting, including stints in Cincinnati, Chicago, Orlando and Jacksonville. During her career as a television and radio news anchor and reporter, Melissa has won four regional Emmys for news and feature reporting.