MADISON (WKOW) -- The City of Madison's Department of Civil Rights, along with the members of the Affirmative Action Commission, the Commission on People with Disabilities and the Equal Opportunities Commission, were saddened to learn of the death of Anthony L. Brown, former Executive Director of the City of Madison's Equal Opportunities Commission (EOC) from 1994-2004.
Madison city officials remember Anthony as a champion for civil rights. During his time with the Equal Opportunities Commission he did much to advance civil rights in our community. He helped enhance protections in housing for lower income members of our community and for those with arrest and conviction records. He helped the Commission investigate racial profiling in Madison traffic stops and in alcohol license enforcement which culminated in Mayor Susan Bauman's creation of the Task Force on Race Relations that lead to the development of a wide range of City-sponsored programs to improve race relations in our community, many of which Anthony played a significant role in implementing.
He created the EOC's Summer Celebration of Diversity Picnic that has been held annually since 1996; created the Rev. James C. Wright Human Rights Award in honor of the first director of the EOC; he was a driving force behind the Study Circles Program in Madison.
He was also active in many community organizations including 100 Black Men of Madison, Madison Alumni Chapter of Kappa Alpha Psi fraternity, the Madison Symphony Orchestra Board of Directors, the Madison Branch of the NAACP, the Wisconsin Fair Housing Network and the Superintendent's Human Relations Advisory Council for the Madison Metropolitan School District.
He was the founder of the Pride Classic that for several years brought nationally known athletes to Madison as a fund raiser for charities. Dr. Brown loved to cook and entertain and was well known for his award winning ribs. He was a charter member of he Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority's Men Who Cook and participated in the event from 1994 to 2001. He was the first place winner in 1994, 1995 and 1996 for his mouth watering ribs.
Harper Donahue, IV, a member of the Department of Civil Rights and a Fraternity Brother of Dr. Brown, had this to say about his passing: "During this time of sorrow and sadness, when I think of Dr. Anthony L. Brown, I can only smile. I think of his well known ear-to-ear grin and I cannot help but to smile with him. He was a great man that set aggressive goals in life and worked diligently to accomplish them all. Dr. Brown lived his life to the fullest and because of this, I cannot feel sorrow right now-only joy as my friend, and Brother, returns home."
Lucía Nuñez, Director of the Department of Civil Rights, said of Brown, "His spirit and love of life were evident in everything he did for this community. Madison is a better place to live due to his advocacy for civil and human rights. We will miss him greatly."
Condolences are extended to Anthony's family, many friends and associates.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to: Dr. Anthony L. Brown Kidney and Liver Transplant Memorial Fund, University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics Organ Procurement Organization, 450 Science Drive, Suite 220, Madison, WI 53711.
On Friday, March 19, 2010, visitation services will be held from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. at Mount Zion Baptist Church, 2019 Fisher St. Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. on Saturday, March 20, 2010, at Mount Zion Baptist Church, 2019 Fisher St., with the Rev. Richard Jones officiating. Visitation will be held from 9 a.m. until the time of service at the church on Saturday. The burial will take place immediately following the funeral service at Roselawn Memorial Park, 402 Femrite Drive.
Since the community was such a pivotal part of Dr. Anthony Brown's life, the family requests all visitation and funeral attendees to bring one photo that portrays the earliest memory you shared with him. These photos will be used in the community collage which will be on display during all services. Please note, these photos will not be returned so we encourage you to contribute to the community collage with a copy.