The Kansas City Call, journalism, University of Kansas, University of Missouri
Lucile Bluford personified undeterred ambition and journalistic integrity, a constitution that would lead some to name her the “conscience of Kansas City” during her tenure as publisher at The Call. Long before running that paper, she was writing for them, as a high-schooler penning her youth column under founder C.A. Franklin. She went on to study journalism at the University of Kansas, graduating with her bachelors in 1932. Seven years later, Bluford was accepted to the University of Missouri’s renowned journalism graduate program, and then promptly denied when they realized she was black. Never one to take discrimination lying down, Bluford applied 11 more times before filing a lawsuit. She remained in Kansas City and took on the role of editor at The Call until her death in 2003, at which point it had sustained as one of the top 6 African-American print publications in the country. Bluford finally got her University of Missouri (honorary) degree in 1989.