Meet the 97-year-old woman who’s working hard to help Hillary win in Virginia

Ms. Prentice is volunteering because she knows we’re stronger together

Izora Prentice was born on February 8, 1919, five months before Congress passed the 19th Amendment and gave women the right to vote. This year, she’s proudly casting her ballot for Hillary Clinton — and she’s working hard to make sure other people vote for Hillary, too. Join Ms. Prentice: Sign up to volunteer!

Ms. Prentice was born and raised in Jonesboro, Arkansas, and grew up during segregation. “I lived on the North side,” she says, “and I went to school in a one-room school that was in the section of town where black people lived.”

In that one-room schoolhouse, Ms. Prentice fell in love with education. Her very first teacher was the person who inspired her to become an educator. “I believe that is why I became a teacher, because I liked my first teacher.”

When her 9-year-old sister died, Ms. Prentice became the oldest child in her family. That made her the trailblazer: She was the first person in her family to finish high school, and went on to be the first to graduate from college. The first class she ever taught was home economics. Back then, she says, only female students were taught how to care for children and keep up a home. But over the course of her life, Ms. Prentice has watched that change.

“It’s so exciting to me that both men and women are now concerned about taking care of the family. Seeing fathers and mothers work together to enhance the life of the family is so significant to me at this time in my life,” she says. “The conversation now is not that you need to go as far as you can go in education to be the best that you can be.”

And this equality doesn’t just apply to family life. Ms. Prentice has seen women and African American people come farther than she could have imagined during her lifetime. And she’s watched communities embrace this equality and work with one another, which she says is the best way to build a better future for the next generation.

That’s why she’s supporting Hillary Clinton.

“What we do together makes us stronger and wiser, because it extends beyond our imagination. We become strong together, and it begins with what we do in our community.”

Today, at 97 years old, Ms. Prentice is still working to unite her community by volunteering for Hillary’s campaign here in Virginia.

Hampton organizer Brittany Albaugh says that Ms. Prentice’s volunteering has inspired her. “As a 26-year-old, I will only have voted for a black man and a woman when this election is over. In Ms. Prentice’s lifetime, women were legally not allowed to vote, and African Americans died to have the right to vote.”

“While so many focus on so much divisiveness in this election I also can see how far we have come. That powerful glass ceiling will be cracked when Hillary Clinton is sworn in as Madame President, and we have people like Ms. Prentice to thank for laying the groundwork that brought us this far,” Brittany says.

Ms. Prentice agrees. “I volunteer because I remember what things were like in my community growing up. I remember how strong we were when we worked together on any problem where there was, in our churches, in our community, in our family. I can’t wait to see Hillary Clinton become president of the United States, because she embodies that spirit.”

“With Hillary as president, we will go so much further and be so much stronger, because we will all work together. I can’t wait to see it.”

Join Ms. Prentice and the thousands of Virginians who are working hard to elect Hillary Clinton by signing up to volunteer today!