Patricia Ashford Manley was born in 1945 in Ann Arbor, and she was raised by her mother. She remembers attending Jones Elementary School and trying out for cheerleading at Ann Arbor High School. Manley graduated from Western Michigan University in 1970 and later earned her master’s in counseling from Eastern Michigan University. She worked as a teacher, cheerleading coach, and guidance counselor at Huron High School for thirty-one years, and was principal of Thurston Elementary School for ten years. She and her husband Lamont Manley enjoy traveling and going to concerts together. They have been married for 43 years.
Michael Thomas Bass was born in 1945 to Thomas and Louise Bass. His parents–a doctor and a teacher–were influential members of Ypsilanti’s Black community. Bass excelled in football, basketball, and track. He was senior class president of Ypsilanti High School in 1963. He received a BA in Education from the University of Michigan. Bass is best known for playing in the National Football League for the Washington Commanders (formerly Redskins) from 1969 to 1975. After retiring from the NFL, Bass ran a resort in the Bahamas. He and his wife Rosita now reside in Florida and they have two daughters, Kimberly and Louise.
Leah Bass-Baylis was born in 1954 in Ypsilanti. Her parents Thomas and Louise Bass–a doctor and teacher–were influential members of Ypsilanti’s Black community. She studied dance at Ypsilanti’s Randazzo Dance Theater and graduated from Spelman College in Atlanta in 1976. She also holds a doctorate in Educational Leadership and Organizational Change from the University of Southern California. Bass-Baylis was a dancer and choreographer for many Broadway shows, including performing in The Tap Dance Kid. In her later career as an administrator, she developed arts education programs in Los Angeles. She and her husband Doug Baylis have four children.
George D. Goodman was born in 1940 and grew up in Ypsilanti. His father George worked at the Ford River Rouge plant and his mother Thelma owned and operated Goodman’s Fashion Center on Harriet Street. After graduating from Roosevelt School and Eastern Michigan University, he served as a U.S. Army officer in Germany for 5 years. Goodman is best known for being the mayor of Ypsilanti from 1972 to 1982. He was also director of the University of Michigan Opportunity Program and the Michigan Municipal League. He and his wife Judith have been married for sixty years, and they have two sons.
Students Display Poster for Human Relations Commission Forum, December 1965 Photographer: Eck Stanger
Ann Arbor News, December 18, 1965
Human Relations Forum Planned: Larry Blood (left), a Slauson Junior High student, Bob Powell, Tappan Junior High, and Nancy Lutkehaus, Ann Arbor High, admire a poster they have prepared to publicize a Jan. 8 junior and senior high human relations forum sponsored by the local Human Relations Commission. The forum is part of a planned program that included the recent local visit of John Howard Griffin, author of the book "Black Like Me." "Silent Long Enough" is the forum's theme and is from a quote used by Griffin when he spoke here in reference to silence about racial injustices.
Laurita Thomas was born in 1950, and her family lived in southwest Detroit and Ontario, California. She attended the University of Michigan and pursued two master’s degrees from Wayne State University and Eastern Michigan University. Throughout her career, Thomas has pushed for better career opportunities for women and women of color. She worked at U-M for 47 years, eventually serving as Vice President for Human Resources. A survivor of domestic violence, she regularly shares her story and was president of the board of Safe House Center in Ann Arbor.
Lois Allen-Richardson was born in 1942 in Ypsilanti, where she remembers attending Harriet Street School and spending time at Parkridge Center. As a young adult, she worked briefly at Goodman’s Fashion Center in the heart of Ypsilanti’s Black business district. Allen-Richardson is an ordained minister and served as a missionary in Haiti and Trinidad. Since 2000 she has been a member of the Ypsilanti City Council, where she has been a strong advocate for the city’s south side. In June 2020, she became Ypsilanti’s first Black woman mayor after the resignation of her predecessor.
William Hampton was born in 1948 in Tyler, Texas, and his grandmother was the midwife. He remembers attending church revival picnics, the Texas Rose Festival, and the Juneteenth parade in his hometown. While attending college in Arlington, Texas, he was active in the Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity. He went on to launch a Section 8 subsidized housing program in Arlington and in Ann Arbor, where he worked in the community development office. Mr. Hampton has been president of the Ann Arbor chapter of the NAACP since 2005.