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The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner

Former Colorado state senator Gloria Travis Tanner was born on July 16, 1934, in Atlanta, Georgia, to Blanche Arnold Travis and Marcellus Travis. Tanner received her B.A. degree in political science and graduated magna cum laude from Metro State College in 1974. She received her M.A. degree in urban affairs from the University of Colorado in 1976. In addition, Tanner graduated from the American Management Association Program for Women in Top Managerial Positions and the Women in Leadership Program at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University.

Tanner worked as an administrative assistant for the Office of Hearings and Appeals at the United States Department of the Interior from 1967 to 1972. She worked as a reporter and feature writer for the Denver Weekly News, one of the leading African American newspapers in the Denver area, from 1972 through 1976. From 1976 to 1978, Tanner was the executive assistant to Colorado lieutenant governor George L. Brown, one of the first black lieutenant governors since Reconstruction. She then worked for Senator Regis Groff as the executive director of his communications office. Tanner was elected as a member of the Colorado State House of Representatives for District 7 in 1985 and served as the House Minority Caucus leader from 1987 through 1990. She was the second African American to be elected to a leadership position in the Colorado House of Representatives. In 1994, Tanner was appointed to the Colorado State Senate to replace Regis Groff who resigned to take a position elsewhere. She was the first African American woman to serve as a Colorado state senator, and held the seat until the year 2000. During her seventeen years in public service, she initiated and sponsored legislation on key issues such as marital discrimination in the workplace, parental responsibility, worker’s compensation cost savings, civil rights for women and minorities, and parental rights for adoptive parents.

Tanner is a widow and has three children: Terrance Ralph, Tanvis Renee, and Tracey Lynne.

Accession Number

A2008.131

Sex

Female

Interview Date

11/6/2008

Last Name

Tanner

Maker Category
Middle Name

Travis

Occupation
Schools

David T. Howard High School

Gray Street School

Metropolitan State University of Denver

University of Colorado Denver

First Name

Gloria

Birth City, State, Country

Atlanta

HM ID

TAN02

Favorite Season

Holiday Season

State

Georgia

Favorite Vacation Destination

Paris, France

Favorite Quote

This Too Shall Pass.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Colorado

Birth Date

7/16/1934

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Denver

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Soul Food

Short Description

State senator The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner (1934 - ) was the first African American woman to serve as a Colorado state senator. She was also elected as a member of the Colorado State House of Representatives for District 7 in 1985, and served as the House Minority Caucus leader from 1987 through 1990. She was the second African American to be elected to a leadership position in the Colorado House of Representatives.

Employment

General Rose Memorial Hospital

U.S. Air Force

Colorado House of Representatives

Town and Country Real Estate, Inc.

Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC

U.S. Department of the Interior

Colorado Governor

Favorite Color

Green

Timing Pairs
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DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner lists her favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner describes her mother's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner describes her father's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner talks about her parents' marriage

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner describes her relationship with her parents

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner lists her siblings

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner describes her earliest childhood memories

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner remembers the holidays

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner describes the Gray Street School in Atlanta, Georgia

Tape: 1 Story: 11 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner recalls her extracurricular activities

Tape: 1 Story: 12 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner remembers David T. Howard High School in Atlanta, Georgia

Tape: 1 Story: 13 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner describes the sounds and smells of her childhood

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner describes the sounds of her childhood

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner remembers Auburn Avenue in Atlanta, Georgia

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner recalls her aspiration to attend college

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner describes her activities at David T. Howard High School in Atlanta, Georgia

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner remembers her time in the U.S. Air Force, pt. 1

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner recalls her conversion to Catholicism

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner remembers her time in the U.S. Air Force, pt. 2

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner recalls meeting her husband

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner describes her early career in Denver, Colorado

Tape: 2 Story: 10 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner lists her children

Tape: 2 Story: 11 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner talks about her work experiences in Denver, Colorado

Tape: 2 Story: 12 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner describes her political activities in Denver, Colorado

Tape: 2 Story: 13 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner talks about her career in real estate

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner remembers the Civil Rights Movement

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner talks about segregation in Atlanta, Georgia

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner recalls the assassinations of the 1960s

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner remembers her first political campaign

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner describes her tenure in the Colorado House of Representatives, pt. 1

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner describes her tenure in the Colorado House of Representatives, pt. 2

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner talks about her tenure in the Colorado State Senate

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner describes her organizational affiliations

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner remembers her work with NOBEL Women

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner talks about serving on the Colorado State Senate's Joint Budget Committee

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner describes her hopes for women in politics

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner describes her mentorship of aspiring black female politicians

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner remembers the 2008 Democratic National Convention

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner talks about the election of President Barack Obama

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner remembers meeting Nelson Mandela

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner reflects upon her life, pt. 1

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner talks about her family

Tape: 4 Story: 9 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner describes her plans for the future

Tape: 4 Story: 10 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner shares her advice for aspiring politicians

Tape: 4 Story: 11 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner describes her concerns for the African American community

Tape: 4 Story: 12 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner describes her hopes for the public education system

Tape: 4 Story: 13 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner shares a message to future generations

Tape: 4 Story: 14 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner reflects upon her legacy

Tape: 4 Story: 15 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner describes how she would like to be remembered

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner reflects upon her accomplishments

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner talks about obstacles to her success

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner reflects upon her life, pt. 2

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner narrates her photographs

DASession

1$1

DATape

4$3

DAStory

2$1

DATitle
The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner describes her hopes for women in politics
The Honorable Gloria Travis Tanner remembers the Civil Rights Movement
Transcript
And so, that's what made you so successful in the different organizations, you know, for, for women, and making sure that they get appointed. What was, what are some of the things--you talked about a lot of different organizations. But in the, and, and a lot of them have to do with women and making sure that, you know, they get appointed to boards. And what are some of the things that, that you had to accomplish to get these things done?$$Well, the first thing you have to help women to believe in themselves, to believe that you can accomplish this, and that you can do it. We always put everybody else before we put ourselves. We got our children. We got our husband. We got the house to take care of. We got this. We always have an excuse that we don't have time, and a lot of times, we don't, unless we can get our schedules together and set up priorities and do things. But the first thing you have to make women think that you, you can do it. You've done this at home. You've, you've done these kind of things before. You just didn't know you were doing it, you know, and get them to think that you can, you can accomplish it. And you can do it, and you are needed, and this is why you're needed there, you know, because if you're not there, these things are never going to come up 'cause, you know, men, men usually don't bring up some of this stuff, especially when it comes to things like parenting. And any kind of legislation that they--in fact, they used to tell us all the time, "That's the problem with you women that you don't get on the budget committee, or you don't get a leadership position 'cause you're always talking about families." Well, shouldn't they be concerned about families, too (laughter)? Are we the only one? But they think they talk about the big things, and we talk about the small ones, you know. So, you have to instill in women that we are capable of doing the same thing, you know. I think the only difference is that we're more sensitive. They say, we are more emotional, but I think being more emotional is--women make us more sensitive to these things, so that--but I, I think is really, really important. I think the most important thing for me, when I walked through that senate door every morning, was to realize how many shoulders I came in on, and how many people are going to be looking at my shoulders to see, can I climb on them, you know? But you got to do something to make it right, a lot less troublesome for women than it has been before. And from the Northeast, too, you know, you have, you have to look at those things and see. And people always say, "Aren't you proud of being the being the first black woman elected to the senate [Colorado State Senate]." I say, "No, I'm not, I'm honored because they finally opened the door, and let one in." But of a hundred years, that'll be, have the senate or so it just shows how many have been denied. It doesn't--I'm not so carried away with just being the first black woman, but what am I going to do with that? I'm going to make sure that I'm not the last one, that's for sure, so that's, that's some of the things (simultaneous).$$(Simultaneous) And so--$You wanted to--we kind of brushed over the civil rights era.$$The era, um-hm.$$And we, we tried to go back and then we, we got a little lost, but you wanted to share a story--$$Yeah.$$--about that time.$$I, when I got out of the [U.S.] Air Force, as I told you, I got accepted at Emory University, Grady School of Nursing [Grady Memorial Hospital School of Nursing, Atlanta, Georgia] there. And when I was there, the civil rights, it just really started with the Rosa Parks and everything. And the black students and nurses, we had a different dormitory. And for the least little thing that would happen if you were late coming in, five minutes, anything that would happen and, and you would get suspended and kicked out of school and everything. It was not happening to the white student nurses. So, we decided to go on strike there, and we all sit in the auditorium. And finally, they sent the dean there and she said to us, "If you don't get back in your classes, and get back in that hospital, you're all going to be maids, like your mother--like your mothers." And, and she never tried to tell us, we're going to try to make it right or anything, and that was really when it got started. And they, they finally suspended some of the students, you know, that got--they said, they got it started, and so forth and so on. But that--by that time in '56 [1956], I, in May, I left Atlanta [Georgia], so I wasn't there any longer. When I got to Denver [Colorado], most people worked for the government, so they all made around the same salaries. They were teachers. They worked at the Federal Center [Denver Federal Center, Denver, Colorado]. So, didn't have much of a civil rights thing going on here 'cause they didn't feel like they needed it, which I didn't agree, but they didn't feel that they needed it here. So, it was not really--the only thing you could really do is send money. And then things start getting tough here with gang type stuff, you know. And that's when people got involved here a lot, but before that, it was not a whole lot. Martin Luther King [Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.], I can remember coming here a few times, but not a whole lot of things. But I had faced so much prejudice as a child, drinking out of the coloreds' fountains, and going up all those steps to the Fox Theatre [Atlanta, Georgia] there that Senator Martha Ezzard was a senator here like I was. And she and I were back there in Atlanta for the Democratic Convention [1988 Democratic National Convention, Atlanta, Georgia]. And they took us over to the Fox and took pictures. And she showed how she went in the front door and I had to go up all these stairs, you know, and stuff. So, it was so many things that I remember--sitting on the back of the bus, and not being able to sit at the counters to eat lunch at the downtown drugstores, at Kress's [S.H. Kress and Co.] and all that, that a lot of things that these people here probably had not faced, you know. I don't know, but I do know they did have problems in Denver, but nothing like we had probably. So, I, I--it's a lot of memories back there, a lot of things that happened as a child, you know.

The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes

Allegra Rene “Happy” Haynes was born on March 4, 1953, in Denver, Colorado. Haynes graduated from Denver's East High School in 1971. She received her B.A. degree in political science (with honors) from Barnard College at Columbia University in New York in 1975. Later in life, Haynes returned to school and received her M.A. degree in public affairs from the University of Colorado in 2002. She also attended Leadership Denver, the Denver Community Leadership Forum, the Rocky Mountain Program, and the State and Local Program at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government.

Haynes began her tenure with the City of Denver as an aide to former Councilman Bill Roberts in 1979. From 1983 to 1990, Haynes worked as an administrative aide to the former Mayor of Denver, Federico Peña, the city’s first Latino mayor. Haynes served on the Denver City Council from 1990 to 2003 and as council president from 1998 to 2000. She was Denver Mayor John Hickenlooper's liaison to the city council from 2003 to 2005 and she played a key role in the development of Denver International Airport. In October of 2005, Haynes retired from the City of Denver after twenty-six years to join the new superintendent of Denver Public Schools, Michael Bennet, as his assistant for community partnerships. Governor Bill Ritter appointed Haynes to the Colorado Commission on Higher Education in September of 2008.

Haynes resides in the Park Hill neighborhood of Denver. She is single, an avid jazz enthusiast, and enjoys science fiction and gardening. She regularly participates in numerous sports and outdoor activities.

Accession Number

A2008.130

Sex

Female

Interview Date

11/7/2008

Last Name

Haynes

Middle Name

"Happy"

Schools

East High School

Park Hill Elementary School

Barrett Elementary School

Gove Middle School

Barnard College

University of Denver Strum College of Law

University of Colorado Denver

First Name

Allegra

Birth City, State, Country

Denver

HM ID

HAY09

Favorite Season

Summer

State

Colorado

Favorite Vacation Destination

Mexico

Favorite Quote

None

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Colorado

Birth Date

3/4/1953

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Denver

Country

United States

Favorite Food

None

Short Description

Academic administrator and city council member The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes (1953 - ) served on the Denver City Council from 1990 to 2003, and as council president from 1998 to 2000. In 2005, she became assistant for community partnerships to the superintendent of Denver Public Schools. Governor Bill Ritter appointed Haynes to the Colorado Commission on Higher Education in September of 2008.

Employment

Young Men's Christian Association

Citizens Advocate office

Denver City Council District 11

Office of the Mayor - City of Denver

Denver City Council

Denver Public Schools

Colorado Parks and Wildlife

Colorado Commission on Higher Education

Favorite Color

Red

Timing Pairs
0,0:462,9:1001,17:1848,32:2156,37:3465,53:4774,71:5082,76:5390,81:6776,126:7238,134:9625,167:9933,172:10549,232:10857,237:16562,261:19046,291:20978,307:38975,589:39315,594:39910,602:40590,608:52442,715:52786,720:54936,749:66546,928:67148,936:68008,957:68524,964:69212,973:69986,984:79287,1043:80156,1055:81262,1071:81578,1076:82605,1095:83553,1104:83869,1113:84343,1121:84975,1131:88451,1183:89636,1198:108188,1394:116422,1464:116862,1470:117566,1480:127820,1590:164935,2067:166105,2086:195000,2376:195445,2382:196068,2390:208146,2541:210382,2579:212274,2616:222480,2704:226800,2736:228560,2786:231280,2829:232560,2857:238400,2971:239040,2981:239520,2988:250341,3092:251445,3109:252342,3140:252687,3146:253929,3173:254412,3182:256482,3267:259794,3313:260070,3318:260622,3341:261657,3361:262278,3372:262554,3377:264486,3435:264762,3440:265038,3445:266556,3482:266901,3488:267660,3501:268350,3517:292760,3784:293390,3796:297890,3875:301130,3922:301490,3927:301940,3933:302930,3949:305540,3986:314734,4077:326550,4210:331620,4304:333600,4311$0,0:225,4:14175,284:14850,294:25482,414:29034,474:39912,761:46350,805:46630,811:46910,816:47960,836:55240,987:57130,1018:70408,1241:85192,1420:96455,1541:97355,1556:107105,1759:107780,1773:123055,2001:140336,2270:141628,2296:166686,2626:171052,2680:171866,2693:175705,2705:178783,2771:182036,2814:182648,2824:197255,3025:197935,3033:204970,3101:205620,3109
DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes' interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes lists her favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes describes her mother's family background, pt. 1

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes describes her mother's family background, pt. 2

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes describes her father's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes remembers her paternal grandmother's family

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes describes how her parents met

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes describes her earliest childhood memories

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes talks about her Hispanic heritage

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes describes her religious upbringing

Tape: 1 Story: 11 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes lists her siblings

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes lists her childhood homes

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes describes the sights, sounds and smells of her childhood

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes remembers her neighborhood friends in Denver, Colorado

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes remembers integrating the Sportland YMCA in Denver, Colorado

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes describes Denver's City Park neighborhood

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes recalls her experiences at Barrett Elementary School

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes remembers her elementary school teacher

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes describes her extracurricular activities

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes describes her experiences at Aaron Gove Junior High School

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes recalls her teachers at Aaron Gove Junior High School

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes remembers the Civil Rights Movement in Denver, Colorado

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes talks about her involvement with the Catholic Church

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes describes her role in student government at Aaron Gove Junior High School

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes describes her protests at Denver's East High School

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes remembers her mentors at East High School

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes talks about the racial climate in Denver, Colorado

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes describes her disinterest in athletics

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes describes her experiences as a debutante

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes remembers her Outward Bound trip to Baja California, Mexico

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes recalls working at The Denver Post

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes describes her aspiration to become a teacher

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes recalls her desire to attend an all-girls college

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes describes her decision to attend Barnard College in New York City

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes remembers her high school trip to Europe

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes talks about founding an impromptu freedom school in Denver, Colorado

Tape: 4 Story: 9 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes recalls her experiences in New York City

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes talks about her early interest in politics

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes describes her decision to become a lawyer

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes remembers Barnard College's admission counselor, R. Christine Royer

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes describes her early work within Denver City Council

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes describes her role as an aide in the Denver City Council office

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes talks about her position with Mayor Federico Pena's administration

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes describes the accomplishments of Mayor Federico Pena's administration

Tape: 5 Story: 8 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes describes her decision to run for Denver City Council

Tape: 5 Story: 9 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes remembers running for Denver City Council

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes talks about Denver's African American and Hispanic mayors

Tape: 6 Story: 2 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes describes the development of the Denver International Airport

Tape: 6 Story: 3 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes talks about initiating a tax for children's programming

Tape: 6 Story: 4 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes describes her role on the welfare reform board

Tape: 6 Story: 5 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes remembers her accomplishments on the Denver City Council

Tape: 6 Story: 6 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes talks about her international travels

Tape: 6 Story: 7 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes recalls her decision to leave law school

Tape: 6 Story: 8 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes talks about working with Denver Mayor John Hickenlooper

Tape: 6 Story: 9 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes describes her role in Denver Public School's Community Partnerships

Tape: 6 Story: 10 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes talks about her appointments to state boards

Tape: 6 Story: 11 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes remembers the 2008 Democratic National Convention

Tape: 7 Story: 1 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes talks about President Barack Obama's presidency

Tape: 7 Story: 2 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes reflects upon her life

Tape: 7 Story: 3 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes describes her interest in jazz music

Tape: 7 Story: 4 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes talks about her organizational board affiliations

Tape: 7 Story: 5 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes reflects upon her legacy

Tape: 7 Story: 6 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes describes how she would like to be remembered

Tape: 7 Story: 7 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes shares her advice for future generations

Tape: 7 Story: 8 - The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes narrates her photographs

DASession

1$1

DATape

3$6

DAStory

6$5

DATitle
The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes describes her protests at Denver's East High School
The Honorable Allegra "Happy" Haynes remembers her accomplishments on the Denver City Council
Transcript
You were getting ready to enter high school, and you said you attended East High School [Denver, Colorado]?$$Um-hm.$$Okay, so tell me about the transition from junior high school [Aaron Gove Junior High School, Denver, Colorado] to high school.$$Oh, I was just anxious you know to, to go to high school and very excited about going to East, I mean you know growing up in our neighborhood that was, you know that was a big dream. And you know it just had a great reputation, and of course all of the older students, you know kids who lived in the neighborhood had gone to East and so I was very excited about going there. And I knew there were a lot of active, you know, students at East and so I, you know I became very involved in you know student activism you know, you know as soon as I, as soon as I got there as a, as a sophomore. You know it was part of the times when student, student activists, activism and on camp- on college campuses and on high school campuses around the country, and East was no exception. East was, you know, an interesting school you know very integrated, and in fact had been for quite a number of years, one of the few you know naturally integrated schools in the country and really you know prided itself on the diversity of the student body. But, you know we were at the cusp of the, you know the, of the Black Student Movement in my first year at East High School. And so I got involved in a lot of things you know. I think my first couple of months in school I became involved with a bunch of seniors in an initiative to change our dress code, because girls had to wear you know dresses still to school and we wanted to be able to wear pants, and so, so we you know mounted a campaign and you know did petitions and you know went to the administration, to the principal [Robert Colwell]. We, we actually succeeded after a month or two of this campaign to get the dress code changed at, at East. You know, but my poor mother [Anna Garcia Haynes] she was just like you know here we are your first two months of school couldn't you just, you know, do your homework and do your work, do you have to you know cause trouble so soon. But, you know those were the times and I became also involved that very first semester in forming the Black Student Alliance with a number of other friends, turned out to be mostly seniors, but you know we were still dealing with the after effects of the assassination of Dr. King [Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.] and the fact that you know that the, the school was the community. You know the, you know the schools had really you know tried to suppress you know the feelings and the concerns and you know what, you know what was on students' minds. And I, I think that just stirred, you know, the activism all the more. I mean I think that's why, you know, people came to you know the reality of you know we're, we're gonna have to, you know these issues are gonna have to be raised more if, if, if there's a lesson here we've gotta pay more attention and more has to happen, you know, to acknowledge the, you know, the contributions of people in the, you know in the black community. And you know we began to think of you know how little, you know here we were in these schools and you know we weren't even, you know they didn't want us to talk about you know the one person hero that we really did know well. And we, you know began to realize you know we don't know much about the rest of these you know the other folks in our culture, in our history, and, and so you know we, we pushed for having Afro American history, which you know wasn't being taught in public schools in, in Denver [Colorado] at that time. And so we organized our Black Student Alliance and then we, you know we made some demands on the school on a number of things, but including you know the fact that we wanted Afro American history and you know we wanted--we had, we had some black teachers in the school, again playing a very similar role you know, you know looking out for all of us, not only looking out for us, but making sure that we were doing what we were supposed to be doing, you know we were there to get an education, that we would do well, and so there were and it was tumultuous times at East, while I, I was there in the midst of a lot of things.$Was that the second, 'cause you said three initiatives, and I'm sorry I just asked you, but was that one of them (simultaneous)?$$(Simultaneous) There were a couple, you know I also sponsored a, an initiative to introduce a living wage. A living wage ordinance was something that was occurring across this country, and the idea of having, you know, a minimum wage in our, our city that was different than you know other places in the state it was, you know it was, you know considered an anti-business you know sort of move. You know I had a very good relationship with the business community and you know worked very collaboratively with them on the airport [Denver International Airport, Denver, Colorado] and you know, you know economic development over the years. But, I felt strongly that, you know, just, just because you know we would be the only city and you know it would put us at a disadvantage to, to suggest that you know we shouldn't do what was right, what we thought was right in providing a wage that people could actually, you know, raise a family and pay their rent and put food on the table was, you know, something I believed strongly in and so you know that was sort of another, one of the against the odds initiatives that I was in- involved in and you know I didn't succeed early on, but you know as I said later on, you know, we were able, you know it became a broader issue, more people in the community became engaged and you know I, I think as more people, you know, realized the significance of it you know. So, sometimes your first time around you don't succeed, but you know--$$Or you plant the seed (simultaneous).$$--(simultaneous) you pave, you plant the seed and again the same thing is true of the smoking ban. I, you know sponsored the legislation to create a smoking ban, very controversial and you know couldn't get the su- you know support of the, you know the--it was tough, you know, having, the mayor [HistoryMaker Wellington Webb] eventually did, you know, support it, but you know people, you know it was considered again an anti-business, the sky will fall, and you know everybody will leave Denver [Colorado] and you know, you know, but you know I, I thought it was important as a pub, you know that public health you know should trump all of those things and that you know there was, you know citizens shouldn't be forced to trade off you know the health and that the, you know the evidence was clearly there about the effects of secondhand smoke and, you know we had to be guided by what data, you know with the, with the facts you know had told us. And, and so again you know that was, it failed at the local level, but it, it, I succeeded in getting the support of all the local people who said we agree with you on the health issues and we will, if we can do it statewide where it won't have an economic disadvantage for Denver we would and so they, true to their word, they did support you know a statewide initiative and we eventually now have a statewide smoking ban. I like to think that it was the result of my early Quixote [Don Quixote] like efforts.