Iowa Apologizes to Black Woman for Actions in 1955

October 24, 2016

When University of Iowa students in 1955 elected Dora Martin Berry Miss State University of Iowa, the honor made national news because of Berry's race. But the University of Iowa ignored the election, declining to comment on articles that appeared nationwide and not having Berry make the kinds of appearances her predecessors made at university events.

On Friday, the university apologized. Bruce Harreld, university president, spoke directly to her at an event for black alumni, The Iowa Citizen Press-Citizen reported. “Dora Martin Berry of the University of Iowa, I would first like to apologize for 60 years plus of official neglect of your status,” said Harreld. “We as an institution are very proud of your accomplishments. And we’re grateful that you are such an important member of our Hawkeye family.”

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