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Dorothy Height has been a leading force in the civil rights movement for more than 60 years. She is president emeritus of the National Council of Negro Women, an organization she has served since the 1930s. As a promoter of black family life, she initiated the Black Family Reunion Celebration (1986), now an annual event on the National Mall in September. She has received more than 20 honorary degrees and has been honored with the Presidential Medal of Freedom (1994) and the Congressional Gold Medal (2004). Her most recent book is "Open Wide the Freedom Gate" (Public Affairs, 2003). She died in 2010.