From NKAA, Notable Kentucky African Americans Database (main entry)

Johnson, Thelma Banks

(born: May 8, 1909  -  died: October 26, 2012) 

The first African American elected official in Henderson County was Thelma Johnson, she was elected to the Henderson County Board of Education in 1978 and served until 1986. She also served as chair of the Henderson Human Rights Commission. Thelma Banks Johnson had moved to Henderson, KY in 1946. She was named Distinguished Citizen of the Year by the Henderson Chamber of Commerce in 1984. She had also served as an extension agent at the University of Georgia and at the University of Kentucky, retiring in 1970. The National Association of Extension Home Economists awarded her the Distinguished Service Award. She was the first African American in Kentucky to receive the award. Thelma Banks Johnson was born in Mount Pleasant, FL, the daughter of Mary and Harry Banks. For more listen to the Kentucky Humanities: Thelma Banks Johnson @ SoundCloud; and Chuck Stinnett, "Womankind celebrated at Honor Court dedication," 09/15/2014, online@Courier & Press.

Kentucky County & Region

Read about Henderson County, Kentucky in Wikipedia.
Read about Fayette County, Kentucky in Wikipedia.

Kentucky Place (Town or City)

Read about Henderson, Kentucky in Wikipedia.
Read about Lexington, Kentucky in Wikipedia.

Outside Kentucky Place Name

Cite This NKAA Entry:

“Johnson, Thelma Banks,” Notable Kentucky African Americans Database, accessed May 22, 2024,

Last modified: 2021-07-11 00:18:02