Ann Nixon Cooper

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					Ann Nixon Cooper
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Ann Louise Nixon Cooper (January 9, 1902 – December 21, 2009) was a
centenarian mentioned in United States President-elect Barack Obama's                              Ann Nixon Cooper
November 2008 election speech as a representative of the change in status                Born        Ann Louise Nixon Cooper
African Americans had undergone during the past century and more in America.                         January 9, 1902
                                                                                                     Shelbyville, Tennessee, U.S.
Before that, she was a noted member of the Atlanta African-American community
and an activist for civil rights.                                                        Died        December 21, 2009 (aged 107)
                                                                                                     Atlanta, Georgia, U.S.

Biography                                                                                Occupation Activist

                                                                                         Known for   Invoked in President Barack
Cooper was born in Shelbyville, Tennessee, on January 9, 1902, and raised in                         Obama's acceptance speech
Nashville.[1] She moved to Atlanta, Georgia, in her early twenties with her
husband, Albert Berry Cooper, a dentist,[1] and they had four children together. [2] During that time, she served more than fifty
years in public work on the board of Gate City Nursery Association and also helped found the Girls Club for African American
Youth. [3] Because there were no integrated Boy Scout troops in 1930's Atlanta, she wrote to the Boy Scouts in New York for
help in starting Troop 95, Atlanta's first Boy Scout troop for African Americans. [4] When her husband died, Martin Luther King,
Jr. sent Cooper a telegram; she also met with Coretta Scott King and saved photographs of the occasion.[5] Cooper first
registered to vote on September 1, 1941. Though she was friends with elite black Atlantans like W. E. B. Du Bois, John Hope
Franklin and Benjamin Mays, she didn't exercise her right to vote for years, because of her status as a black woman in a
segregated and sexist society. [6]
During the 1970s, she served as a tutor to non-readers at Ebenezer Baptist Church. She also served on the Friends of the
Library Board, serving at one time as vice president of the board. In 1980 she received a Community Service Award from
Channel 11 for being one of the organizers of the black Cub Scouts and serving as the first den mother for four years.
She was also awarded the Annie L. McPheeters Medallion for community service from the Auburn Avenue Research Library
on African American Culture and History in 2002. [2]

Age issue
When featured in Obama's 2008 speech, Ms Cooper was 106 years old. Some news outlets erroneously reported her as
"oldest voter" [7] even though there were several older voters, including then-114-year-old Gertrude Baines, 113-year-old
Beatrice Farve, 112-year-olds Maggie Renfro and George Francis, 110-year-olds Virginia Call and Onie Ponder, and 109-
year-olds Nettie Whittington and Amanda Jones (all voted for Obama); and 112-year-olds Eunice Sanborn, Besse Cooper,
and Walter Breuning (all indicated they likely voted for McCain) and 109-year-old Gertrude Noone (who voted for McCain).
Ann Nixon Cooper died on December 21, 2009, three weeks before what would have been her 108th birthday.
Census research suggests she may have been a year younger than claimed; the 1910 census lists her as 7 years old in April
1910. Given a January birthdate, this suggests birth in 1903.

   1. ^ a b Brown, Chandler (6:00 p.m. November 05, 2008). "106-year-old in Obama speech: ‘Things can change’"   . AJC.COM.
      Retrieved 2008-11-10.
   2. ^ a b "Ann Cooper Biography" . The History Makers. Archived from the original on 11 December 2008. Retrieved 2008-11-06.
   3. ^ Booth, Jenny (2008-11-05). "Profile: Ann Nixon Cooper, 106, singled out for praise by Barack Obama" . London: Times Online.
      Retrieved 2008-11-06.
   4. ^ National Public Radio: Talk of the Nation, December 30, 2009.
   5. ^ Jagger, Suzy (2008-11-06). "Ann Nixon Cooper: the history woman" . London: Times Online. Retrieved 2008-11-06.
   6. ^ THE ASSOCIATED PRESS (Thursday, November 6, 2008, 12:57 AM). "Racism survivor Ann Nixon Cooper, 106, is honored by
      Barack Obama" . New York Daily News. Retrieved 2008-11-10.
  7. ^ "Ann Nixon Cooper: Ann Nixon Cooper oldest American voter"   . November 11, 2008.
  Transcript of Barack Obama acceptance speech       , Chicago Tribune. Retrieved on 10 November 2008.
  Inventory of the Ann N. Cooper Collection    , Digital Library of Georgia. Retrieved on 10 November 2008.

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