Quotable Nerdy Chick: Mary McLeod Bethune

When nerdy chick Kathy Erskine quoted Mary McLeod Bethune in her interview, I’m ashamed to admit that I didn’t know who she was. I was curious though, because I grew up in Camden, SC, which is right next to Bethune SC. I wondered if Mrs. Bethune was from SC. So of course I did what every nerdy chick does when faced with the unknown: I researched the topic until it wasn’t unknown anymore. Yes, Ms. Bethune was from my home state, though apparently not from Bethune itself.  And wow, she did some amazing things. She started a school for African Americans in Florida that became Bethune-Cookman University. She pushed for standards that rivaled the best schools around. She worked for civil rights, was awarded the Springarm Medal by the NAACP, was named one of the 10 greatest American Women in 1935, and she advised President Franklin Roosevelt. Really, the short format I use here does not do her justice. Please read more about her HERE. You will be amazed at what she was able to accomplish. And you will be inspired by some of the things she said.

  Mary McLeod Bethune Quotes

  • Cease to be a drudge, seek to be an artist.
  • Faith is the first factor in a life devoted to service. Without it, nothing is possible. With it, nothing is impossible.
  • Invest in the human soul. Who knows, it might be a diamond in the rough.
  • The true worth of a race must be measured by the character of its womanhood.
  • We have a powerful potential in our youth, and we must have the courage to change old ideas and practices so that we may direct their power toward good ends.

Amen. Amen. Amen to that last quote!  Click HERE to read quotes from other smart women. This list is updated weekly!

3 comments on “Quotable Nerdy Chick: Mary McLeod Bethune

  1. kathyerskine says:

    How appropriate that she was from SC — I didn’t even plan that!

  2. Hooray for Mary McLeod Bethune! Thanks for highlighting her, Kami! So many of us know too little about what she accomplished.

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