Jessie O. Gooding
11/28/1926 - Present
One of the Dayton region’s foremost civil rights leaders, Jessie Gooding was born and raised in Minden, La. After serving in the segregated U. S. Army, he studied at Wilberforce University and became a chemist at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. Witnessing — and experiencing — discrimination in the workplace, Gooding established equal employment opportunity and sensitivity training, which became mandatory in the Air Force in the 1960s. He also advocated for the Air Force to recruit top science and engineering students from historically black colleges and universities. Gooding is the longest serving president of the Dayton chapter of the NAACP (1982-2002.) Under his leadership the Dayton NAACP increased voter registration and pressed for reforms to end discrimination in education, employment, housing and law enforcement. He is co-author with Rosalind Vera Osinubi of Freedom and Justice for All: My Life and Dayton Civil Rights History.