Former Oklahoma state senator from Tulsa dies at 88

TULSA, Okla. — (AP) - Maxine Horner, one of the first Black women elected to the Oklahoma Senate and a longtime advocate for victims of the Tulsa Race Massacre, has died. Horner was 88.

Horner died unexpectedly Sunday at her home in Tulsa, said state Sen. Kevin Matthews.

Horner served 18 years as a state senator from Tulsa before retiring due to term limits in 2004. In the Senate, she spearheaded legislation to create a commission to study the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre, an attack on the city’s Black community by a white mob.

Horner also worked to create a scholarship program, Oklahoma’s Promise, for high school students whose parents earn less than $55,000 a year.

“Without a doubt, the citizens of Tulsa and our entire state are better for Maxine Horner’s life and service,” Matthews said in a statement.