Mildred Williamson

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Mildred Williamson
Mildred Williamson

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Mildred Williamson is a Chicago based leader[1] of Committees of Correspondence for Democracy and Socialism[2].

Mildred Williamson is a social worker and social justice activist from Chicago and a member of the national coordinating committee of CCDS. Since 1987, she has been a public health activist, program developer and health care service provider for the underserved, specifically HIV care and prevention.

Dr. Williamson, is HIV/AIDS Section Chief, Illinois Department of Public Health. She is married to Willie Williamson.

Early life

Mildred Williamson as a lifelong Chicagoan, the product of parents who were among those who migrated from the Jim Crow south to the north in search of a better life. She grew up in the Chicago neighborhood now known as “Bronzeville[3].”

Education

BA, 1975, Loyola University; MA, 1989, and PhD, 2000, University of Chicago[4].

Early activism

As a college student, in the early 1970s, Mildred Williamson participated in the campaigns to save the old Cook County Hospital and the nearby Chicago Maternity Center[5].

"Memorial Services for Karlin Flory"

In an article about the 1985 memorial service for Karlin Flory, son of "Ishmael Flory, former chairman of the Illinois District of the Communist Party USA, and the late Eloise Boone", he was identified as having been in "many activities for peace and equality" including protests at the South African Consulate, was a "Daily World supporter" who circulated the paper "in the early days of Operation Breadbasket, which later became Operation PUSH".

Among the speakers were:[6]

National Committee, CPUSA

In 1990, Mildred Williamson served on the National Committee of the Communist Party USA.[7]

Communist Party dissidents

On November 15-16 1991, 30 dissident members of the National Committee of the Communist Party USA convened a meeting to "sign a statement of events" - most or all signatories were soon to break with the party and were later to form Committees of Correspondence.

The signatories included Mildred Williamson, Illinois[8];

Communist Party reformer

In 1991 Mildred Williamson, Illinois, was one of several hundred Communist Party USA members to sign the a paper "An initiative to Unite and Renew the Party" - most signatories left the Party after the December 1991 conference to found Committees of Correspondence.[9]

Committees of Correspondence

In 1992, Mildred Williamson, Chicago, endorsed the Committees of Correspondence national conference Conference on Perspectives for Democracy and Socialism in the 90s held at Berkeley California July 17-19.[10]

Conference on Perspectives for Democracy and Socialism in the 90s

The Conference on Perspectives for Democracy and Socialism in the 90s was the Committees of Correspondence's first national conference held in Berkeley, California July 17-19, 1992.[11]

Workshops that were held at the conference on Saturday, July 18 included:[12]

Health The challenge to our health. What next in the struggle for national health care? The fight against aids and infant mortality and for a rational system of preventative medicine for all

Jack Siegel tribute

Chicago Committees of Correspondence held a tribute banquet to 88 year old member Jack Spiegel, on October 3, 19993, with 250 in attendance.

special guest included State Senator Jesus Garcia, Alderman Helen Shiller, Harold Rogers from the Coalition of Black Trade Unionists, Carole Travis from the UAW, Larry Reagan from the Amalgamated Clothing and Textile Workers Union, Bernice Bild from the Coalition for New Priorities, Camille Odeh, from the Coalition of Palestinian Women and Meca Sorentini from the Puerto Rican Socialist Party

Keynote speakers CoC co-chair Manning Marable. Illinois CoC co-chairs Sandy Patrinos and Mildred Williamson presented the awards. Maggie Brown sang songs, some written by her father Oscar Brown.[13]

CoC National Coordinating Committee

The following are listed in order of votes they received as members of the Committees of Correspondence National Coordinating Committee, elected at the Conference on Perspectives for Democracy and Socialism in the 90s held at Berkeley California July 17-19.:[12]

Further CoC activity

In July 1994 Williamson was elected[14]to the 15 member National Co-ordinating Committee of Committees of Correspondence at CoC's founding conference in Chicago.

In 1994 Mildred Williamson, Chicago was listed on a "Membership, Subscription and Mailing List" for the Chicago Committees of Correspondence, an offshoot of the Communist Party USA.[15]

In 1995 Midred Williamson and Willie Williamson were listed[16] as two of the "CoC members and friends" donating to Committees of Correspondence. They contributed $25.

In 1997 Mildred Williamson served on the National Co-Ordinating Committee of the Committees of Correspondence.[17]

At the Committees of Correspondence National Conference and Convention, July 25-28, 2002 San Francisco State University, the Plenary Panel and Discussion on Electoral Reform and the Struggle for Democracy comprised;

John Nichols, Gus Newport, Medea Benjamin, Mildred Williamson The protection of the right to vote, ballot access, electoral campaigns that are independent of corporations and major political parties.[18]

In 2006 members of the Committees of Correspondence for Democracy and Socialism National Coordinating Committee were[19];

Marilyn Albert, Mael Apollon, Carl Bloice, Barbara Blong, Barry Cohen, David Cohen, Otis Cunningham, Carl Davidson, Mort Frank, Todd Freeberg, Pat Fry, Marian Gordon, Ira Grupper, June Hemmingson, Ed Hemmingson, Fred Hicks, Duncan McFarland, Anne Mitchell, Maxine Orris, Ted Pearson, Gina Pesulima-Palencar, Edith Pollach, Marty Price, Merle Ratner, Jay Schaffner, Jae Scharlin, Mike Stein, Harry Targ, Walter Teague, Meta Van Sickle, Steve Willett and Mildred Williamson.

July 25 2009 Mildred Williamson, was a candidate[20]for the Committees of Correspondence National Co-ordinating Committee at CCDS national conference in San Francisco-elected.

Mildred Williamson, Illinois, was elected in 2013 to the Committees of Correspondence for Democracy and Socialism National Coordinating Committee;[21]

Health activism

On April 24 2007 at the School of The Art Institute Auditorium, Chicago DrPeter Orris of Stroger Hospital, activist Mildred Williamson and author Debra Evenson held a discussion[22]following the screening of "Salud" a documentary exploring Cuba’s healthcare system & global initiatives...

Progressives for Obama

In 2009 Mildred Williamson Committees of Correspondence,was listed as a signer of the Progressives for Obama website.[23]

Publications

Chapters in African American Women and HIV/AIDS: Critical Responses; It Just Ain't Fair: Access to Health Care for African Americans; Reframing Women's Health; Families' and Children's AIDS Network News[24].

References

  1. http://www.cc-ds.org/leadership.html
  2. http://www.cc-ds.org/williamson_testimony.pdf
  3. http://www.cc-ds.org/williamson_testimony.pdf
  4. http://www.saic.edu/people/Williamson_Mildred.html?color=GREEN
  5. http://www.cc-ds.org/williamson_testimony.pdf
  6. "Daily World", January 11, 1985, p. 11
  7. PWW October 20, 1990, page 24
  8. List of those NC members who signed statement of events at meeting of 11/15-16/91
  9. Addendum to Initiative document
  10. CCDS Background
  11. Conference program
  12. 12.0 12.1 Proceedings of the Committees of Correspondence Conference: Perspectives for Democracy and Socialism in the '90s booklet, printed by CoC in NY, Sept. 1992 (Price: $4)
  13. CoC newletter, Oct./Dec. 1993, page 5
  14. http://www.greenleft.org.au/1994/155/9068
  15. Chicago CoC "Membership, Subscription and Mailing List" 10.14.94
  16. CoC Corresponder Vol4 No 5 p3
  17. CoC Corresponder November 1996/January 1997 Page 2
  18. [The Corresponder Vol 10, number 1, June 2002 http://www.cc-ds.org/pub_arch/CorresponderX1-2.pdf]
  19. http://www.cc-ds.org/IssueJune2006Version4.0.pdf
  20. http://www.cc-ds.org/NCC%20Round.htm
  21. CCDS leadership, accessed March 2014
  22. http://mailman.depaul.edu/pipermail/intstuds02/Week-of-Mon-20070416/000882.html
  23. Progressives for Obama
  24. http://www.saic.edu/people/Williamson_Mildred.html?color=GREEN
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