Arlene Dunn (Arlene Wilgoren)

SNCC, PAR (People Against Racism), Arkansas, 1960-69
113 Kendal Dr.,
Oberlin, OH 44074
(440) 420-9661

My Arkansas Journey.

My first consciousness about racial issues in America was when I was in high school. I was attending school in Boston in 1957 when the Little Rock 9 attempted to integrate Central High School. I was about the same age as these students and felt the injustice immediately.

My first act of protest was in 1960 while attending college. I participated in supportive pickets at Woolworth's in the north during the sit-ins in the south.

I volunteered in the New York SNCC office in 1963 and 1964 and then worked for SNCC in Pine Bluff and Little Rock, Arkansas in 1964 and 1965.

I returned to Boston in late 1965 and shortly hooked up with other white civil rights workers who were forming a group called People Against Racism (PAR), a group aimed at educating whites about racism and motivating them to participate in change in their communities. In 1968 I moved to Detroit to help run the newly formed national organization of this organization. I left PAR in late 1969.

I was a member of the Race Relations Council of Northwest Indiana between 2002 and 2012.

I moved to Oberlin in 2013 and am excited at the possibilities of continuing my work in the social justice arena.


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