The state of Florida selected Nilda Comas from a field of 1,600 applicants to create a statue for the U.S. Capitol’s National Statuary Hall collection. Comas’ statue of civil rights activist Mary McLeod Bethune is the first African American woman to represent a state. The marble statue stands at 11’ and weights more than 6,000 lbs.
In October, Comas unveiled the work at the Daytona State College’s News-Journal Center in Daytona Beach, Florida. A special exhibition honoring Bethune’s life and legacy opened in conjunction with the unveiling. Thousands of visitors have enjoyed learning about Bethune and taking in her likeness. In early 2022, the work will travel to Washington, D.C. to take its place in the National Statuary Hall.
The City of Fort Lauderdale proclaims December 2, 2021 “Nilda Comas Day in Fort Lauderdale,” honoring the internationally recognized sculptor and local resident.