History of the Black Women’s Leadership Council began twenty-eight years ago, a group of determined African-American women met in the community room of the Guardian Civic League on Girard Avenue to discuss their concerns about the role of African American women. They were concerned about the growing educational, housing, and economic disparities in Philadelphia. After participating in elections with African-Americans mayors, black women were yet again relegated to the back seat; expected to support male leadership while being denied seats at the "power table". Fed-up with the restrictive role of being the "get out the vote apparatus" - licking stamps, making lunches, and knocking on doors, they said "No" and The Black Women's Leadership Council was born.
As a result of their early efforts, more black women were elected to office, seated on the judicial bench, appointed to boards, commissions, and to policy-making positions in both state and local government. Women were now at the "power-table" using their voices to impact the issues that affect the community. Today, a group of African-American women have come together to re-establish The Black Women's Leadership Council in what Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. would have called "the fierce urgency of now." Distressed by current events including subsiding black household incomes; failing schools; the need for the Black Lives Matters movement and the normalization of racism, sexism, and misogyny the member of the BWLC actively participate and control conversations that impact Philadelphia.