Evelyn Thomas (306474)
Credit: Contributed

West 132nd Street between Frederick Douglass and Adam Clayton Powell Boulevards will be co-named in honor of civic leader Evelyn Thomas.

Family, friends are gathering for a renaming ceremony set for July 17. Council Member Bill Perkins, Assemblywoman Inez Dickens, former Manhattan Borough President C. Virginia Fields and former Congressman Charles Rangel are scheduled to be in attendance.

Thomas founded the Central Harlem Association of Small Homeowners and Small Businessmen (CHASH SB) in 1957. She worked to preserve and advance the Harlem community and was known throughout the city. In 1959, then-Mayor Robert F. Wagner appointed her to be on the groundbreaking Committee on Harlem Affairs which was created to ease racial tension.

In addition to her civic leadership, Evelyn Thomas was the secretary to Percy Sutton from 1966-77 and continued her work to advance neighborhood preservation and investment in the Harlem community until her death in 1999.