Thursday, February 17, 2011
I was privileged this morning to be a guest speaker at the Barbara Jordan birthday celebration at Jordan Elementary School. Barbara Jordan is one of my personal heroes, and it was wonderful to join this community in celebrating her life and legacy.
First, Barbara Jordan believed in the power and importance of education. Second, she overcame obstacles that were put in front of her, especially during the time of segregation. Third, she was a trailblazer (the first African American woman in the Texas Senate and the first African American woman elected to the U.S. Congress from the south). And fourth, she proved that she could make big changes for her state, our country, and the world.
It's people like Barbara Jordan — brave trailblazers of all races and backgrounds — who made it possible for me to be the first minority, first African American, and first woman to serve as the superintendent in Austin. And, for that, I am extremely honored and grateful.
Oh, and great news! We also enjoyed an early viewing of a U.S. postal service stamp that will be issued next September. Guess who is on the stamp? Yep, BARBARA JORDAN! Now that's really cool! She is the 2011 Black Heritage stamp honoree, the 34th in the USPS Black Heritage series, and the perfect choice to inspire a young generation of Americans.