Adam Foreman Presents “The Extraordinary Life of Mary Bethune: Daughter of Enslaved Parents, Presidential Advisor, and Civil Rights Activist”
Mary Bethune began her life as a sharecropper on a cotton plantation in South Carolina and grew into a passionate educator, advisor, and activist. After founding a normal school in Daytona Beach, Florida, in 1904, Bethune became the national president of the National Association of Colored Women, and before World War II, she advised President Calvin Coolidge and President Herbert Hoover. President Franklin Delano Roosevelt invited Bethune to lead a team of public policy advisors called the Federal Council of Negro Affairs or “The Black Cabinet,” doing so from 1933 until the president’s death.
Her service continued during World War II where she became a Special Assistant to the Secretary of War and used that position to establish the first women’s officer candidate school with the Women’s Army Corps. In her long career of public service, Bethune became a leading educator and one of the earliest black female activists in the United States. She is immortalized in monuments, postage stamps, historic sites, and museums. However, the jewel of her legacy is Bethune-Cookman University, which remains a top 50 ranked historically black college and university (HBCU). Join Adam Foreman, the Museum’s Student Programs Specialist, for a discussion on the extraordinary life of Mary Bethune.
Dinner with a Curator is an evening of dinner and history hosted by The American Sector Restaurant & Bar culinary team and The National WWII Museum professionals. Guests participate in a discussion on a featured topic related to World War II interpreted through the Museum's collection as well as a theme-inspired four-course dinner paired with beverage specials.