Pasco, Washington has a bigger place in American history than you may think.
Many great people have come from Pasco, but none stand taller in the annals of history than Arthur Fletcher. His service to his people and his country ensures that his legacy will stay intact for generations.
Who was Arthur Fletcher?
Considered by most to be the father of affirmative action, Arthur Fletcher lived an extraordinary life. After his military service, Fletcher became an NFL player for four years. After his football career was over, Fletcher set his eyes on politics. He moved to Pasco in the 1960s and worked with the Hanford Atomic Energy Project. Fletcher dedicated himself to improving the lives of Black residents of East Pasco. He would be elected to the Pasco City Council in 1967. The next year, Fletcher would run for Washington State Lieutenant Governor, barely losing the election. Do you know who his bodyguard was? That would be Ted Bundy.
Mr. Fletcher goes to Washington.
Fletcher's defeat opened the door for him as he was appointed by President Nixon as the Assistant Secretary of Labor. He would serve in the administrations of Presidents Nixon, Ford, Reagan, and George H. W. Bush before becoming the chair of the United States Commission on Civil Rights in 1990.
Arthur Fletcher had unsuccessful campaigns for the United States presidency and mayor of Washington D.C.
So, what is the iconic quote?
While the director of UNCF in the 1970s, Fletcher is credited with saying, "A mind is a terrible thing to waste."
Arthur Fletcher died in 2005 at the age of 80, having lived a life most couldn't dream of.
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