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Rockland Civil Rights Pioneer Honored

by Richard Kavesh

NYACK, N.Y., October 24 — Nyack’s Berea Seventh-day Adventist Church was packed on Saturday as parishioners, politicians, and long-time friends of Wilbur Aldridge turned out to honor the Rockland civil rights pioneer for his decades devoted to keeping the unity in the community.

Wilbur was born and raised in Greensboro, North Carolina, where he participated in many civil rights marches and was even arrested for protesting its segregated school system. After moving to Rockland, Wilbur attended Rockland Community College and graduated from Farleigh Dickinson University, where he was a founding member of the Black Student Caucus.

After graduation, Wilbur went to work at Letchworth Village Developmental Center, where he was instrumental in recruiting and maintaining a diverse management and administrative staff. He later became Director of Multi-Cultural Affairs and Compliance, where he was responsible for the development and implementation of diversity, multicultural, and sexual harassment training classes.

Wilbur has devoted more than 40 years of advocacy for all forms of human rights and civil rights cases.

County Legislator William Darden presented Wilbur with a commemoration from the Rockland County Legislature honoring Wilbur. On October 10th, Wilbur received the most outstanding honor that can be given by the NAACP New York State Conference, the E.T. Reed Award. But Wilbur’s not done yet. He’s still fighting for closing the achievement gap in education; fair and affordable housing in all of our communities; assuring fairness in criminal justice; providing adequate health care for all Americans; and fair and equal treatment for all people in Rockland County and the United States.

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