Chester Owens is a community leader, statesman, civil activist, business professional, humanitarian, and Kansas City historian. Mr. Owens is a Sumner High School alumnus and has been actively collecting articles and artifacts pertaining to Sumner High since graduating. He donated these items to the school to help establish the Sumner High School Alumni Room, which was later named in his honor. He will lead our visit to the Alumni Room and participate in an panel discussion with fellow Sumner alumni so we can learn about their personal experiences with school segregation in Kansas.
Mr. Owens was the first African American in the twentieth century voted to the Kansas City, KS City Council in 1983 and served as the Chairman of the Labor and Industry Committee of the NAACP. He has received numerous awards throughout his lifetime for his civil rights and community service work including the NAACP Civil Rights Award, the Friends of Yates Black Man of Distinction Award, the Kansas City, Kansas Leadership Award, the Dr. E. A. Freeman Living Legends Award and the United Way Volunteer of the Year among others.
BS, Pittsburgh State University