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Dorie Ladner

Dorie Ladner

Dorie Ann Ladner (born 1942) is an American civil rights activist.

Early life

Dorie Ladner was born in Hattiesburg, Mississippi on June 28, 1942. In high school, Ladner joined the NAACP Youth Council in Hattiesburg. In this organization, she met NAACP state president Medgar Evers.



Ladner was expelled from Jackson State University in 1961 for her support of the Tougaloo Nine. Dorie and her sister Joyce Ladner were invited to enroll at Tougaloo College. In 1973, Ladner earned her B.A. degree from Tougaloo College, and in 1975, she earned a master's degree in social work (MSW) from the Howard University School of Social Work.


In 1961, Ladner became engaged with the Freedom Riders. She joined the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) and was arrested in 1962 trying to integrate the Woolworth lunch counter in downtown Jackson.

Dorie was jailed for picketing in the 1962 Jackson, Mississippi boycotts:

Just before Christmas of 1962, after months of discussions and a false start the previous year, a vigorous boycott had finally been launched against downtown merchants in Jackson. Initially, young people carried the spirit of the movement. Dorie and Joyce Ladner were heavily involved. At a time when bail money was unpredictable and most Mississippi-born students were afraid of reprisals against their parents, Dorie was among the first to go to jail for picketing.

In August 1963, Dorie took part in the March on Washington in response to the June assassination of Medgar Evers.

In 1964, she became a key organizer in the Freedom Summer Project. She became the first woman to head a COFO Council of Federated Organizations project in 1964. She served as the SNCC project director in Natchez, Mississippi (1964-1966).

Current work

She currently lives in Washington, D.C. where she is frequently invited to speak on panels and interviewed for documentary film projects. For example, in 2014 she was interviewed for the American Experience PBS documentary on Freedom Summer and she spoke on a panel with Stanley Nelson Jr. and Khalil Gibran Muhammad, hosted by New America in New York. In August 2017, Ladner was one of the panelists for a workshop called "SNCC: Civil Right Activism to DC Statehood" at the National Lawyers Guild 80th annual convention in Washington, D.C. along with Judy Richardson, Courtland Cox, Frank Smith, and others. In October 2017, Ladner took part in a discussion after the screening of the short film This Little Light of Mine: The Legacy of Fannie Lou Hamer. The other panelists included filmmaker Robin Hamilton and Kim Jeffries Leonard, President and CEO of Envision Consulting and Member of LINKS, Inc., in a discussion of women activists during the Civil Rights Movement.


  • 2011: "Humanitarian Award" from Fannie Lou Hamer National Institute of Citizenship and Democracy
  • May 18, 2014: Awarded an honorary doctorate from Tougaloo College.
  • October 23, 2015: Natchez, MS designates Dorie Ladner Day
  • 2016: "Well-Behaved Women Don't Make 'Her-Story': The Dorie Ladner Story" documentary produced by Kendall Little.
  • June 2017: Awarded an honorary doctorate from the University of the District of Columbia.
Collection James Bond 007



External links

  • SNCC Digital Gateway: Dorie Ladner, Documentary website created by the SNCC Legacy Project and Duke University, telling the story of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee & grassroots organizing from the inside-out
  • We're Still Not There: A Practical Guide to Resistance on Full Frontal with Samantha Bee
  • "In Memory of Mattie Bivens & George Greene" by Dorie Ladner at
  • "Honoring the Memory of Fannie Lou Hamer at NYU DC," Dorie Ladner taking part in a panel discussion after the screening of the short film This Little Light of Mine: The Legacy of Fannie Lou Hamer.

Text submitted to CC-BY-SA license. Source: Dorie Ladner by Wikipedia (Historical)