What Do You Do With a Voice Like That?
The Story of Congresswoman Barbara Jordan
by Chris Barton ill Ekua Holmes
Full disclosure: The first time that I heard Barbara Jordan speak, I was mesmerized. I had tuned into the impeachment hearings, and listened as a powerful voice spoke with measured authoritative language. I wanted to learn more about the woman behind that voice.
Well-known and respected Texas author Chris Barton whose Whoosh, Dazzle Ships, and The Day-Glow Brothers are some of his outstanding nonfiction titles has penned a picture book biography that is worthy of this Texas legend and her legacy.
I had the opportunity to hear Coretta Scott King Award-winning illustrator Ekua Holmes (Voice of Freedom: Fannie Lou Hamer, Spirit of the Civil Rights Movement). She displayed some of the original art that she created for this picture book.
Ms. Holmes shared that her granddaughter served as the model for young Barbara Jordan. Note: she's the young girl in pink standing in front of a tree. It took a few tries before she captured the essence of a confident young Barbara Jordan. The image of Barbara, returning to her home years later is particularly poignant. The artist used a family home as the model in these images. It is fitting that these sources serve as inspiration for her work.
We remember it, and we honor it by making our own voices heard.
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