Barbara Jordan was born in Texas in 1936. Beginning her career in law, she yearned for a role in political change. She worked for the local Democratic Party, speaking out on contemporary issues.
In 1966, Barbara's political charisma secured her a seat in the Texas Senate. Six years later, she was the first black woman from a southern state elected to the U.S. House of Representatives.
In the late 60s, she met psychologist Nancy Earl. Hiding her lesbianism for the sake of her career, she publicly portrayed Nancy as just a close friend. Yet they shared a home as a devoted couple for 30 years.
In 1994, Barbara was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
When she died in 1996, the press hounded Nancy for details about their private life. But she refused, in her last act of loyalty to the woman she loved.
This Rainbow Minute was read by Candace Gingrich.