Home World News Henrietta Turnquest, 73, trailblazer for Black women politicians, dies

Henrietta Turnquest, 73, trailblazer for Black women politicians, dies

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Determination personified Henrietta Turnquest as she became an attorney, state lawmaker and community activist in her adopted home of Georgia. That, plus fearlessness and the ability to spot problems and bring coalitions together made her a trailblazer.

“My mother was in the vanguard,” said son Malcolm Turnquest, noting that she was initially one of fewer than 50 black female attorneys in Georgia and among the first handful of women of color elected to the Georgia General Assembly. She became the first Black woman to serve as an assistant floor leader — for Governor Roy Barnes — and spearheaded the integration of the Georgia Association for Women Lawyers.

Henrietta Turnquest, 73, died of complications of Alzheimer’s March 29 in Mobile, Alabama. A memorial service was held April 26.

“She always stood her ground,” recalled State Senator Nan Orrock, who served with Turnquest in the state House. “She was very clear about standing up for…

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