Book signing with Betty Reid Soskin, oldest national parks ranger
Event tags: Author, activist, parks, memoir, African-American
Betty Reid Soskin has been a home-front war-years worker, a singer-songwriter and performer, a writer, a legislative aide, the oldest national parks ranger, a public icon, and an honest and tireless fighter, both against discrimination of all forms and for the growth and triumph of the human spirit and values to benefit us all. She began work at the Rosie the Riveter/World War II Home Front National Historic Park when she was 85. In her blog, CBreaux Speaks, she writes, "Life has never been richer, nor more abundantly lyrical," and "I've grown into someone I'd like to know - were I not me already!"
The child of proud Louisiana Creole parents who refused to bow down to Southern discrimination, she was raised in the Bay Area's African American community before the great westward migration of World War II. After working in the civilian home-front effort in the war years, she and her husband, Mel Reid, helped break down racial boundaries by moving into Walnut Creek, an essentially all-white and initially unwelcoming community. There she raised four children - one openly gay, one developmentally disabled - while resisting her neighbors' prejudices.
Betty found a welcoming community at the Mt. Diablo Unitarian Universalist Church, receiving great support from then minister Rev. Aron Gilmartin and church member David Bortin. She performed her own compositions at church events singing and playing guitar.
Blending selections from many of Betty's hundreds of blog entries with interviews, letters, and speeches collected throughout her long life, "Sign My Name to Freedom" invites readers into a very American story through the words and thoughts of a national treasure who has never stopped looking at herself, our country, or the world with fresh eyes.
Presented by Mt Diablo Unitarian Universalist ChurchVisit Event Website for More Info