Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity Inc.
Eta Psi Sigma Chapter
 

 

Bro. Harold L Washington






Bro. Harold L. Washington was a lawyer and politician who became the first African-American Mayor of Chicago, serving from 1983 until 1987. Always serving as a leader, Washington rose to the rank of First Sergeant in the Air Force during WWII. Later Bro. Washington graduated with a B.A. degree from Roosevelt University and then received his Juris Doctorate from Northwestern University School of Law. At the start of his political career, Bro. Washington began to organize the 3rd Ward's Young Democrats (YD) organization to help strengthen the Democratic Party in Chicago. During an at-large election held in January 1965 he was voted into the Illinois House of Representatives. In 1967, he was ranked by the Independent Voters of Illinois as the fourth-most independent legislator in the house and named Best Legislator of the Year. 

His years in the House were focused on becoming an advocate for black rights. He continued work on the Fair Housing Act, and worked to strengthen the state's Fair Employment Practices Commission. In addition, he worked on a state Civil Rights Act, which would strengthen employment and housing provisions in the federal Civil Rights Act of 1964. In 1980, Washington was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives for Illinois' 1st congressional district. Bro. Washington's major congressional accomplishment was legislation to extend the Voting Rights Act, an act that outlawed discriminatory voting practices that had been responsible for the widespread disenfranchisement of African Americans in the U.S. In 1983 Washington won the mayoral general election to become mayor of Chicago. In 1987, he was re-elected for Mayor of Chicago. In Chicago various city facilities and institutions are named or renamed after Bro. Washington to commemorate his legacy.