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The Honorable Eva M. Clayton

Visionary and GRRO Board Member

Eva M. Clayton, born September 16, 1934, in Savannah, Georgia, is a trailblazing U.S. congresswoman. She earned a B.S. in biology from Johnson C. Smith University in 1955 and later an M.S. in biology and general science from North Carolina Central University in 1962. Despite an unsuccessful congressional bid in the early '70s, Clayton's campaign spurred black voter registration. Over the years, she contributed to various public and private ventures, co-founding the Soul City Foundation in 1974.

Clayton's political career gained momentum when she won election to the Warren County Board of Commissioners in 1982. In 1992, she entered the Democratic primary to succeed Representative Walter Jones, Sr. She became the first black woman elected to U.S. Congress in North Carolina, serving from 1992 to 2003. During her tenure, she held key positions on committees and was the past chair of the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation.

Post-congressional service, Clayton completed a three-year assignment with the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations in 2006. Currently, she chairs Preserve Community Pharmacy Access NOW (PCPAN), advocating for accessible and affordable healthcare and pharmacy services.

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