Bridges Digital Archive: Audio and Video Recordings


Sandi Richey


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Oral History

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Sandra Richey describes moving to Redlands in 1972, where she had to navigate a wealthy white culture that frequently exposed her to subtle forms of racism and a strong sense of entitlement. She began working as a librarian at the University of Redlands in 1974. Though she had no prior library experience, she believes the University hired her because of ongoing student protests against the University's lack of diversity among faculty. While working at University of Redlands, she also experienced racism, and she speaks eloquently about the difficulties of often being the only Black person in so many spaces, for herself and for Black students at the University. Outside of work, Sandi mentions the importance of Black organizations like the Adrienettes and churches as they were among the only places where she would see other Black people in Redlands. She shares stories of the unequal ways she has seen Black children treated in Redlands schools even up to the present day. While Sandi believes that things have gotten better in some ways, she notes that the town and the University still have a long way to go.


Interview conducted by Alicia Lombardo (University of Redlands).