Interview, Mary Jane Walker
Mary Jane Walker (b. 1948) was born in Cincinnati, Ohio. Married at the age of 16, she moved to Rochester, New York, with her husband in 1965. She graduated from East High School and attended Monroe Community College, earning an Associate’s Degree in Secretarial Science in 1970. She went on to attend SUNY Brockport, where she studied journalism. In 1973, she became the editor of the African American newspaper, Communicade. Walker also worked as a writer and producer at WCMF and WXXI. She became involved in a wide variety of community organizations and won several awards for her accomplishments and activism, such as Print Journalist of the Year, the Madison High School Community Service Award, and Who’s Who of American Women (1979).
In this interview, Walker describes Communicade as a vehicle through which positive messages about the Black community can be shared. She cites Rochester’s rich history of Black publications, beginning with Frederick Douglass’s North Star newspaper, and describes some of the challenges of running Communicade.