Alice Tregay worked to help desegregate Chicago’s schools, became a political activist who worked to help the help elect the city’s first African-American mayor and helped inspire a young man named Barack Obama long before he came the nation’s first black President. Yet her story is largely unknown.
Craig Dudnick directed the film Alice’s Ordinary People about Tregay and her involvement in the civil rights movement and politics. The film will be shown on Thursday night at 7:00 at the Kalamazoo Public Library. Dudnick will also be on hand Thursday to discuss the film.
Tregay’s brother was Evanston’s first black firefighter in the 1950’s. Dudnick made a film about him, which Alice liked. She approached Dudnick to make a documentary about the Chicago Freedom Movement.
Dudnick says Tregay had a vision of building a political movement within the system. He says Alice brought a special spirt and courage to work against the odds. Dudnick says she built a grassroots movement from the ground up.
Tregay passed away in 2015. But Dudnick says she remained active right up until the end of her life. He says they traveled together to Ferguson, Missouri just months before her death to speak about police-community relations.