Wednesday, August 20, 2008


If a public servant's value can be measured by strength of personality alone, then Congresswoman Stephanie Tubbs Jones was priceless.

She was smart, funny, energetic and committed to Cleveland, America and the world just lost one of the finest public servants of all times.

Some elected officials endure the political side of the job, Stephanie Tubbs Jones embraced it.

She loved the handshakes and hugs, the speeches and the cheers - perhaps because she knew how amazing it was that the daughter of a factory worker and skycap at Cleveland Hopkins International Airport, was proud of achieving a number of "firsts" among black women to be a judge, a county prosecutor and a five-term member of Congress.

She was the first to serve as a member of Congress from Ohio, the first to join the House Ways and Means Committee, and the first to chair the Ethics Committee.

"I have no illusions about myself," Tubbs Jones told us. "It could all go up in a puff of smoke. I'll never lose sight of that."

The career and life of Stephanie Tubbs Jones came to a sudden end Wednesday, three weeks before her 59th birthday and just one week before the DNC Convention.

A wise woman once told Freedom Of Speech staff members, that the best way to generate a "can do attitude" was to always ask "Why not?"

That wise woman was Congresswoman Stephanie Tubbs Jones.

We had the pleasure of working with this great woman for a short period of time in Washington and we will never forget the experience.

She always remembered the little things about you, your name, where you were from, what your parents did and how you got there. She never forgot and we never will either.

Every time we see an American flag flying we will always think about her "can do attitude."

The Honorable Stephanie Tubbs Jones will forever live in our hearts and of all who cherished justice, peace, and equality.

She appeared at The Grand in New Albany in support of Hillary Rodham Clinton.