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Sykes Remembers C.J. Prentiss

April 8, 2024
Vernon Sykes News

Today, state Senator Vernon Sykes (D-Akron) remembered former member of the Ohio Senate Democratic Caucus C.J. Prentiss, who passed away on April 2.

“Senator Prentiss and I served together in the Ohio House of Representatives from 1991 to 1998,” Sykes said. “She was one of the most effective advocates for public education and human rights this state will ever know.”

Senator Prentiss represented the city of East Cleveland and other parts of Cuyahoga County in the Ohio Senate from 1999-2006. While in the Senate, Prentiss served as the Minority Whip and in 2005 became the second African American woman to serve as Senate Minority Leader.

Previous to her time in the General Assembly, Prentiss served on the Ohio State Board of Education from 1985-1990. While serving in the legislature, Prentiss became the first woman president of the Ohio Legislative Black Caucus (OLBC).

“Senator Prentiss was a trailblazer in many respects,” said Sykes. “She paved a remarkable pathway for so many and leaves behind an indelible legacy of service to the community and the state, along with a life of esteem that is well worth emulating.”

More info on Prentiss’ life and arrangements can be found here.