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Ella Baker was a key but mostly behind the scenes leader in the Black freedom struggle from the 1930 until she passed in 1986 She worked together with well known leaders such as W. E. B. Du Bois, A Philip Randolph and Martin Luther King Jr , working in the NAACP and playing a key initiating and mentoring role with the historic Black student movement of the 1960s, helping guide and train the leaders of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) Her leadership was key in the historic freedom rides the sit-in movement and the voter registration movement in the Deep South She also helped form the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party (MFDP) which challenged the all-white Mississippi Democratic Party causing a national crisis at the DNC in 1964 After the early 1960s she continued to struggle for the rest of her life on many issues like freeing Angela Davis in support of Puerto Rican political prisoners, the anti-apartheid movement, women movement and peace movement Baker emphasized the importance of linking the struggles for civil rights and civil liberties

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