George Washington University has announced that civil rights champion William L. Taylor’s collection of legal papers, speeches, and historical documents will be housed at its Graduate School of Education and Human Development Gelman Library. Taylor died in June 2010.
GW staff said that the William Taylor papers will serve as a valuable tool for future generations.
“A collection like the Taylor Papers continues to write the history of such a dynamic era for historians and researchers, and details how change happens over time,” said Meredith Evans Raiford, director of GW’s Special Collection Research Center.
Taylor’s career spanned more than a half century. He began his legal career working with Thurgood Marshall at the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund. There, he wrote the brief in the Little Rock school case in which the Supreme Court definitively held that Brown v. Board of Education was the law of the land.
In the course of his career, Taylor served as vice chair of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights and chair of The Leadership Conference Education Fund board. While at The Leadership Conference, he successfully led efforts to strengthen and extend the Voting Rights Act of 1965, the Civil Rights Restoration Act of 1988, the Civil Rights Act of 1991, and the 1993 National Voter Registration Act.
The Taylor family has established the Bill Taylor Memorial Fund at The Leadership Conference Education Fund. All contributions to the fund will be used to further Bill Taylor’s vision for social justice, equality and equal opportunity.