Shirley Chisholm

Shirley Chisholm

Overview

Shirley Anita St. Hill Chisholm was an American politician, educator, and author. In 1968, she became the first black woman elected to Congress, where she represented New York’s 12th Congressional District from 1969 to 1983.

Throughout her tenure in Congress, Chishom worked to improve opportunities for inner-city residents. She was a vocal supporter of spending increases for children, health care, and other social services. On January 25, 1972, she became the first major-party black candidate for President of the United States, and the first woman to run for the Democratic presidential nomination.