Roy Williams, 74, Co-plaintiff in Suit That Created Dallas' 14-1 City Council System, Led to Election of Minorities

Roy H. Williams was a teenager when he started his work as a lifelong advocate for civil rights by protesting segregated lunch counters and bus stations across East Texas.But his biggest impact came as an activist in Dallas, where he and Marvin Crenshaw were co-plaintiffs in the landmark 1988 federal lawsuit that led to Dallas' 14-1 system for electing City Council members.Before the lawsuit, no Dallas minority had been elected citywide to the council. The new system, in which only the mayor is elected at large and all others are voted in by district, quickly resulted in the election of more minority council members.Williams, 74, died Saturday of complications from a stroke at the Dallas VA Medical Center.Services are pending. Mayor Mike Rawlings plans to call for a moment of silence honoring Williams at Wednesday's council meeting.  Continue reading...

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