Mary McLeod Bethune (1875-1955) was an African-American educator and one of the preeminent civil rights leaders of the early-to-mid 20th century. In 1904, the education-focused Bethune founded a school for African-Americans girls in Daytona Beach, Florida. That school eventually became Bethune-Cookman University. She served on Franklin Delano Roosevelt's "Black Cabinet" and was actively involved in organizations such as the National Association of Colored Women, the National Council of Negro Women, and the National Youth Administration. She died in 1955, one year and a day after the Brown v. Board of Education decision.
"We live in a world which respects power above all things. Power, intelligently directed, can lead to more freedom. Unwisely directed, it can be a dreadful, destructive force."
Quoted from her last will and testament.