Black Pro-Life Pioneer: Dr. Mildred Fay Jefferson

“I am at once a physician, a citizen, and a woman, and I am not willing to stand aside and allow this concept of expendable human lives to turn this great land of ours into just another exclusive reservation where only the perfect, the privileged, and the planned have the right to live.” — Dr. Mildred Jefferson

Dr. Mildred Jefferson

Dr. Mildred Jefferson

February is Black History Month. Earlier this month we honored the memory of Erma Clardy Craven, an African-American pro-life pioneer.

Today National Right to Life honors Dr. Mildred Fay Jefferson, the first African-American woman to graduate from Harvard Medical School, and who served as NRLC president from 1975-1978.

Dr. Jefferson died October 15, 2010, at age 84.

The video tribute linked to below was shown at the 41st Annual National Right to Life Convention June 23, 2011, in Jacksonville, Florida.

Please set aside a few minutes to watch this powerful presentation, brilliantly and lovingly put together by Derrick Jones, NRL’s Director of Communication. You have to hear Dr. Jefferson in her own voice to appreciate why she was a powerful orator and debater.

Here is the memorable final paragraph from the letter Dr. Jefferson wrote for the 1977 NRLC Convention book:

“We are speaking for those who cannot speak for themselves; defending those who cannot defend themselves and fighting for those who cannot fight for themselves. We will win the battle for life because we must. But when we win, that victory will not be for ourselves—but for America, the world, and all mankind.”

Again, this great video tribute can be seen at