She Built NYC announces statues honoring four more trailblazing women

By Faye Penn

She Built NYC, the campaign that pays tribute to pioneering New York women, is honoring four more trailblazers with statues that celebrate their contributions to the City.

Monuments of Billie Holiday, Elizabeth Jennings Graham, Dr. Helen Rodriguez Trías, and Katherine Walker were announced today (March 6) at 10 am, in front of the Brooklyn Museum.

A statue of Rep. Shirley Chisholm, the first black woman elected to Congress and the first African American woman to campaign for the Democratic Party’s nomination for president of the United States, was announced last fall.

“When we launched She Built NYC, we promised this would not be a ‘one and done,’” said former Deputy Mayor Alicia Glen. “Today’s announcement marks real action by the City of New York to ensure that our public realm exemplifies the diverse and accomplished women who make this city so great.”

Glen and First Lady Chirlane McCray launched She Built NYC last year to ensure that half of the city’s statues honor women who, despite their historic impact on New York, have been absent from its public spaces.

Just five of the city’s 150 statues currently depict women.

She Built NYC will start filling that gap citywide by installing the inaugural group of statues throughout all five boroughs.

“Public monuments should tell the full history and inspire us to realize our potential—not question our worth. In honoring these four trailblazers today, New Yorkers will have the opportunity to see powerful women who made history receive the recognition they deserve,” McCray said.

Photo by Ed Reed