Tulsa activist Barbara Santee has died

Barbara Santee, a Tulsa-born activist and graduate of The University of Tulsa, died aged 81 on November 7, 2018.

She had worked in the TU Center for Health Policy Research, and was also an executive director for the Oklahoma state affiliate of the National Abortion and Reproductive Rights Action League (NARAL).

Santee donated more than 40 years’ worth of materials related to her activism work to Special Collections in 2015. The papers include her research, written articles, her creative work including plays and poetry, as well as photographs of activist events and marches. One of the record groups comprises documents from a local reproductive rights clinic, demonstrating the challenges a typical clinic faced in the 1980s and 90s, such as hate mail, and protesters, who were recorded on VHS cassettes that Special Collections has digitized.

Also included in the collection are more than 300 buttons and pins related to reproductive activism that Santee wore on various pieces of clothing to different marches and events.

A memorial service for Santee has been planned to take place at All Souls Unitarian Church on January 12 at 3pm.

About Melissa Kunz

Melissa Kunz is a Special Collections Librarian. She holds a Masters in Library and Information Studies and a J.D. from the University of Oklahoma, and a Bachelor of Arts in English from Hendrix College in Arkansas.
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