I-35 Dedication Honors Hannah Diggs Atkins

Friday, October 28th 2011, 6:18 pm
By: News 9


OKLAHOMA CITY -- A section of Interstate 35 was dedicated in honor of civil-rights activist Hannah Diggs Atkins Friday.

A ribbon-cutting ceremony was held today at the new Oklahoma Judicial Center, which houses the Oklahoma Supreme Court.  The ceremony was attended by state and local officials.

"Hannah Diggs Atkins played a huge role in our state's history," said state Rep. Mike Shelton, D-Oklahoma City. "It is fitting to honor her memory by naming one of our major roads in her honor. This is just one small way to ensure that Hannah Diggs Atkins' legacy lives on and continues to inspire future generations."

Atkins was the first black woman elected to the Oklahoma House of Representatives and the first woman to chair a House Committee.  She represented House District 97 from 1969 to 1980.

Atkins fought for child welfare, health care, tax reform, mental health reform, and civil rights. 

She was appointed as U.S. delegate to the 35th Assembly of the United Nations by President Jimmy Carter.