Orin Pierson / Petersburg Pilot
Elizabeth Peratrovich Day, February 16, was recognized with a parade down mainstreet. Peratrovich worked tirelessly for civil rights, and is most known for providing crucial testimony that led to the passage of Alaska's Anti-Discrimination Act in 1945, the first such act in the nation. When asked by the Senate, "Will the equal rights bill eliminate discrimination in Alaska?" Elizabeth answered: "Have you eliminated larceny or murder by passing a law against it? No law will eliminate crimes, but at least you as legislators, can assert to the world that you recognize the evil of the present situation and speak your intent to help us overcome discrimination." Her speech split the opposition and allowed the bill to pass. Peratrovich lived in Petersburg.