sarah_moore_web.jpgBALTIMORE, Md. — The NAACP is mourning the passing of Sarah Moore Greene, a longtime activist and former member of the NAACP National Board of Directors. She was 102. A memorial service for her took place Monday in Knoxville.

 “Sarah Moore Greene acted as Knoxville’s conscience for much of the 20th century,” stated NAACP Chairman Roslyn M. Brock. “When she joined the NAACP National Board of Directors she brought with her years of experience fighting injustice, and left an indelible mark on the association. She will be truly missed by those who learned from her – her students, but also her colleagues, family and friends.”


 “Sarah Moore Greene was a brave and talented civil rights icon,” stated NAACP President Benjamin Todd Jealous.

 “Whether she was conducting a sit-in at a segregated restaurant, or sitting in the mayor’s office to negotiate fair treatment, Mrs. Greene was consistently effective and persistently active. We extend our deepest sympathies to her family and friends.”

Mrs. Greene, the daughter of a former slave, taught in Knoxville for years before becoming the first African American to serve on the Knoxville City School Board. She became a civil-rights icon for her work leading sit-ins and fighting discrimination and segregation in her community.


Mrs. Greene served on the National Board of Directors from 1972 to 1997. She came on the board to fill the unexpired one-year term of Arthur Spingarn. She also served as president of the Tennessee NAACP State Conference and secretary of the NAACP Knoxville Branch.

The community memorial service took place today Monday at Mt. Zion Baptist Church in Knoxville. Celebration services followed on Tuesday, at Great Warner A.M.E. Zion Church in Knoxville.

Messages of condolence can be forwarded to the Tennessee NAACP State Conference ( or 27 Brentshire Square, Suite A, Jackson, Tenn. 38305.