OAKLAND — Ron Dellums, a fiery anti-war activist who championed social justice as Northern California’s first black congressman, has died at age 82.
Longtime adviser Dan Lindheim says Dellums died early Monday at his home in Washington, D.C., of cancer. Confirmation of Dellums’ death came from his wife, Cynthia Dellums.
Ron Dellums served in Congress from 1971 to 1998 and later became mayor of Oakland.
Dellums was at the center of liberal movements in the 1970s and 1980s. He led the drive to sanction South Africa during apartheid, challenged U.S. entry into wars and increased military spending, and helped start the Congressional Black Caucus.
The Rev. Jesse Jackson calls Dellums one of the most significant social justice figures of the last half century.