September 6, 2022

Sandy Williams

We learned that yesterday, Sandy Williams, a prominent civil rights leader in Spokane passed away. 

Spokesman Review article with more information.

There are no words to convey the deep loss experienced throughout our community by Sandy’s passing.

As we became aware of this terrible news, leadership and staff at our agency shared memories and stories of impact that Sandy has had on us individually and through our work in the community. Regina Malveaux, past CEO of YWCA Spokane, join our discussion and shared that, “this is absolutely devastating. Sandy was a quiet, egoless, but tenacious advocate for truth, justice, and community. Her leadership was singular and Spokane will absolutely not be the same without her.”

Her entire life has been dedicated to racial equity and social justice and she has positively impacted and changed so many lives. She is most known for her incredible work with The Black Lens, Spokane’s local publication focused on issues impacting the African American/Black community. Most recently she brought a dream to life by establishing the Carl Maxey Center, a central space that provides community, services, and resources that address the needs of Spokane’s African American/Black community.

Sandy has been an integral force in Spokane. She has led change through her work at The Pride Center, Odyssey Youth Center, the Youth Suicide Prevention Program, and as an HIV/AIDS Prevention Educator who focused on communities of color. With raw honesty, integrity, and unwavering clarity towards a true path to justice, she has led countless trainings, presentations, and courageous conversations that invite the Spokane community to do better.

Sandy was honored with the Carl Maxey Racial and Social Justice awards at our 2018 Women of Achievement celebration. You can read her bio here and view photos from this celebration here. If you are not yet familiar with the Carl Maxey Center and its incredible impact in our community, please consider taking time to visit their website at and support their work in honor of Sandy.

We offer our deepest condolences to her family and to all who knew her and were impacted by her.

Jeanette Hauck, CEO of YWCA Spokane

By: Erica Schreiber

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