Statements of Support

“Ida B Wells is a heroine to people everywhere who fight against the horrors of racism and brutality. Her story and memory should be honored by a monument by a great artist, and this is the chance to make it happen so that the legacy of her courage, her success, and what her life says about America will survive and continue to inspire.” –Sunny Fischer, Chair, National Public Housing Museum

“Considering the fact that less than 1% of the monuments in this country honor African American women, it will be fitting to have the first one in Chicago honor Ida B. Wells. She spent almost 50 years of her life fighting for justice and equality. She is a national figure whose activism still impacts us today. We all need to remember and be inspired by her bravery and the sacrifices she made in the struggle for civil rights.” –Sylvia Y. Cyrus, Executive Director, Association for the Study of African American Life and History

“Ida B. Wells is one of the most inspiring leaders we have had in the U.S., and a beacon for us all. She is one of my personal heroes. I strongly support this monument to her name and memory.” –Jane Mansbridge, Charles F. Adams Professor of Political Leadership and Democratic Values Harvard Kennedy School

“Rust College is pleased to endorse the Ida B. Wells-Barnett Monument effort. An effort to recognize a true daughter of Rust College and the Civil Rights Movement in this country.” –David L. Beckley, President, Rust College

“I want children of the future to grow up knowing of the inspiring contributions that this brave, brilliant and dedicated woman made to our world. We need to see and celebrate Ida B. Wells, and other role models like her, to encourage all people in our democracy to feel empowered to make a difference.” –Patricia Watwood, Artist, Brooklyn NY

“The true contributions of a human being are often seen long after they have lived among us. Their legacy reaches far and wide in our community. As Mayor of the Great City of Holly Springs, home of Ida B. Wells Barnett, I urge all to join the effort to establish this monument to our insightful and beautiful sister in celebration of her life.” – Kelvin O. Buck, Mayor, Holly Springs, MS

“One of the highest honors of my life was to receive an award named after Ida B. Wells, one of the greatest investigative journalists in U.S. history.  Ida B. Wells is a symbol of what is best in journalism and, indeed, America.  For that reason I enthusiastically support the campaign to erect a monument that reminds the world of her extraordinary achievement.” – Former Dean of Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism and past president of the American Society of Newspaper Editors 

“The Ida B. Wells Monument is a singular opportunity to celebrate and acknowledge Bronzeville’s history while anticipating its future.” – Alderman William D. Burns, 4th Ward

“I am writing in support of your efforts and to comment the Ida B. Wells Commemorative Art Committee and the Chicago Office of Tourism and Culture for developing a monument that will celebrate Ida B. Wells’ legacy and help increase public awareness of her important work.  The location of the monument in Chicago’s historic Bronzeville community is of great significance and appreciation to the communities and generational admirers who were impacted by her work…As a female leader of the great state of Illinois I can personally appreciate and support eh commemoration of Ms. Wells’ life, work and writings.” – Kimberly du Buclet, State Representative, 26th District

As the written history of America finally, albeit slowly, recognizes the role of African Americans, some names emerge as giants from the shadows.  One of those is certainly Ida B. Wells, America’s premier anti-lynching campaigner.  Born into slavery, she was destined to be one who would help shape post Civil War America as an investigative journalist, newspaper editor and publisher, and leader of the emerging women’s and civil rights movements.  We here in Chicago are proud to claim her as our own for the many years of leadership she provided our city.  I was delighted to learn of plans for a monument to her life and work here in the place she called home for so many years and trust that the project will soon become a reality. – Congressman Danny K. Davis (D-IL 7th District)

It is without hesitation that I offer my support for the Ida B. Wells Monument.  Sadly, much of the history of Bronzeville is not celebrated as it should be. It is important that people who live or visit our community know about the many contributions some of its residents have made towards social justice…She used her many talents to address inequality wherever she saw it even in the face of threats against her….As residents and tourists alike visit the monument, they will undoubtedly be moved by the courageous dedication exhibited by Ms. Wells and gain a greater appreciation for the historical significance of Bronzeville. I see this as an opportunity to generate community pride while inspiring others to pursue the type of important work that was carried out by Ida B. Wells.   – Alderman Pat Dowell, 3rd Ward 

“It is with hope and pride that I support the movement for an Ida B. Wells Monument in Oakwood Shores. As a journalist and social activist, Wells was a strong voice against racism and sexism. Her advocacy paved the way for generations of African-Americans who followed her, and she should be commemorated with a monument that will invite future generations to learn about her contributions.” – Illinois State Senator Kwame Raoul, 13th District

“At a time when women were seen and not heard, Ida B. Wells was a voice for those who had none.  Even today her legacy lives on, and she continues to be a role model for young women.  Her advocacy for equality for women and African Americans should inspire us all to speak out against injustice.” – Lt. Governor Sheila Simon