Friend to the Multiracial Community Dies

Tom Sawyer, an eight-term Democratic congressman from Ohio has died. He was responsible for introducing Multiracial advocates in Congress in the 1990s. He was close friends with Ohio House Speaker William Mallory, who introduced the country’s first legislation for a Multiracial classification on a state level. Mr. Sawyer was chairman of the House Post Office and Civil Service Subcommittee on Census and Population.

Sawyer asked me, my eight-year-old son, Ryan, and other leaders in the Multiracial community to testify before the subcommittee when we were being ignored by others in Congress. He was gracious to our panel and was especially friendly to my son, who turned out to be the youngest person to date to testify before Congress. Sawyer recommended us for further testimony and helped us connect with the Census Bureau and Office of Management and Budget (OMB). He treated us favorably and led the way for us to be included in further decisions about race and ethnicity. He will be missed by the Multiracial community.