Senate Honors Greenburgh Woman

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The state Senate yesterday passed a resolution h0noring Dr. Olivia Hooker, a Greenburgh resident and a psychologist and former college professor at Fordham University.

Born in 1915, Hooker was the first African-American woman to enlist in the U.S.  Coast Guard during World War II and is a survivor of the Tulsa Riot of 1921, Sen. Andrea Stewart-Cousins, D-Yonkers, said in a news release.

The senator said she introduced the resolution to honor Hooker’s achievements and contributions to the women and civil rights movements.

The Tulsa riots resulted in the death of more than 300 people, and Hooker has recounted her experience as a young girl there at the time.

After the military, she earned a Master’s Degree in psychology from Teachers College at Columbia University and a Doctorate in psychology from the University of Rochester. After serving as a Fordham University professor, she worked as a psychologist at the Fred Keller School in Yonkers until 2002.

“As we continue to celebrate Women’s History Month, it is fitting to honor Dr. Olivia Hooker for her outstanding contributions to the women’s rights and civil rights movements, service to the United States and tireless advocacy for the victims of the Tulsa race riots,” Stewart-Cousins said in a statement.

Stewart-Cousins arranged for state Senate interns to hear Hooker yesterday speak about her experiences.

Here’s a photo of Hooker holding the resolution with senators Shirley Huntley, Suzi Oppenheimer, Stewart-Cousins, Ruth Hassell-Thompson and Toby Stavisky.

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