Congressman Louis Stokes
We mourn the loss of Congressman Louis Stokes, one of the most brilliant and greatest statesmen in the history of this country. Even during his retirement, Congressman Stokes demonstrated his commitment to the continued improvement and enhancement of the minds of African Americans and of people of African descent throughout the Diaspora when he provided a Keynote Address at the 37th Annual International Convention of the Association of Black Psychologist held in Cleveland, Ohio in 2005. As the result of his participation in a panel discussion after his keynote address, Congressman Stokes declared that the kind of insight, knowledge, wisdom and understanding the panelists provided needed to be a part of all Congressional Black Caucus hearings and deliberations. He instructed Past President Linda James Myers to make contact with his administrative successors at the CBC, and although his vision has yet to be fully realized, it will go down in history that this courageous political leader remained ardent and steadfast to his commitment to serving and uplifting people of African ancestry to the best of his ability to the very end.
Congressman Stokes served 15 terms in the United States House of Representatives representing the east side of Cleveland. He was the first black congressman elected in the state of Ohio and in 1968 Attorney Louis Stokes became the first African American Congressman elected from a major city in the United States of America.