WASHINGTON, D.C. – Governor Laura Kelly today joined bipartisan Congressional Leadership, Senators Jerry Moran and Roger Marshall, Congresswoman Sharice Davids, and Congressman Jake LaTurner for the Congressional statue dedication and unveiling ceremony honoring Amelia Earhart, one of the world’s most celebrated aviators and the first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean. The ceremony was held in Statuary Hall in the U.S. Capitol.
“This statue immortalizing Amelia Earhart will serve as an inspiration to our young people for generations to come, propelling them to dream beyond the limits of their time,” said Governor Kelly. “I want to thank our Congressional leaders and our Kansas delegation for the opportunity to honor one of Kansas’ most iconic figures – a woman who showed all of us what it means to reach for the stars.”
Born and raised in Atchison, Kansas, Earhart received her pilot license in 1923 and subsequently championed the advancement of women in aviation. She was declared lost at sea when she disappeared over the Pacific Ocean in 1937. The statue of Amelia Earhart will represent the State of Kansas in the National Statuary Hall Collection alongside a statue of President Dwight D. Eisenhower.
Along with Amelia Earhart, Governor Kelly’s remarks recognized a long legacy of pioneering women in Kansas history, including Susanna Salter, the first woman elected mayor in the United States in 1887; Georgia Neese Gray, who, during the Truman Administration, became the first woman to serve as United States Treasurer; and Lucinda Todd, a civil rights activist and one of the petitioners in the 1954 Brown v. Board of Education case.