School board names building after late Oklahoma NAACP leader

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OKLAHOMA CITY – The Oklahoma City School Board will name its future administration building after the woman who organized civil rights sit-ins to integrate city businesses.

The board voted 7-0 Tuesday to name the building The Clara Luper Center for Educational Services. It is scheduled to open in 2019.

Luper was a long-time teacher and leader of the NAACP Youth Council who led peaceful protests against drugstores, helping end segregation at retailers in downtown Oklahoma City.

Luper led the sit-ins in 1958, preceding the 1960 demonstrations in Greensboro, North Carolina, a defining moment of the civil rights movement. Luper died in 2011 at 88.

The Tulsa-based Woody Guthrie Center in August awarded Luper and the group its Oklahoma Changing World Prize in honor of the 60th anniversary of the local demonstrations.

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