Groundbreakers

Patsy Takemoto Mink (1927-2002)

Broke multiple glass ceilings. She was the first woman of color, Asian-American woman and woman representative for Hawaii to serve in Congress in 1965. Mink went on to be the first Asian-American woman to run for president in 1972. Although she withdrew from the race after only standing on the ballot in Oregon, Mink continued …

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Kate V. Wofford (1894-1954)

Kate Vixon Wofford was born on October 20, 1894, in Laurens, the eldest of ten children. She received an A.B. with honors in 1916 from Winthrop College and soon after started teaching at Laurens High School. She served briefly in the Washington office of U.S. Senator Ben Tillman and then joined the navy as a …

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Juanita Willmon-Goggins (1934-2010)

As a graduate of SC State University, University of South Carolina, and Winthrop University Ms. Willmon-Goggins became the first African-American woman to be elected to the SC General Assembly. Born in Pendleton, SC she would also become the first African-American woman to serve on the United States Civil Rights Commission. To add to her list …

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Candy Waites (1943- )

Candy Yaghjian Waites represented S.C. House District 75 from 1988 until 1994. Waites received her B.A. from Wheaton College in 1965 and a Masters in Public Administration from the University of South Carolina in 1997. Waites made national news during the 1964 presidential election when her Wheaton classmates raised money to fly Waites home to …

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Jean Hoefer Toal (1943- )

Jean Hoefer Toal, former Chief Justice on the Supreme Court of South Carolina, began her career of public service with her election in 1975 to the South Carolina House of Representatives. She represented Richland County in the House for 13 years and was its first woman to chair a standing committee. She chaired the House …

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