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Downtown Boise park to be named after fifth-generation Idaho activist, an ex-lawmaker

A new park in downtown Boise, which is scheduled to open this summer, will be named after Cherie Buckner-Webb, the first Black woman to serve as an Idaho state legislator.  (Courtesy )
A new park in downtown Boise, which is scheduled to open this summer, will be named after Cherie Buckner-Webb, the first Black woman to serve as an Idaho state legislator. (Courtesy )
By Ian Max Stevenson Idaho Statesman

A new park in downtown Boise will be named after a fifth-generation Idahoan known for human rights and community advocacy, according to the mayor’s office.

The park at 11th Street and Bannock Street, which is scheduled to open this summer, will be named after Cherie Buckner-Webb, the first Black woman to serve as an Idaho state legislator and the founder of the Idaho Black History Museum in Boise.

“Naming this park for Cherie Buckner Webb honors this trailblazing Boisean who, while making our community a better place, has inspired and empowered generations of Boiseans,” Mayor Lauren McLean said in a Friday news release.

Buckner-Webb was a Democratic state representative from 2010 to 2012 and a state senator until 2020.

The activist’s son, Phillip Thompson, now directs the Black History Museum, which is housed inside the historic St. Paul Baptist Church in Julia Davis Park. Buckner-Webb’s great-grandfather was a member of the church.

“For 115 years my family has purposefully and proudly chosen to make Boise our home,” Buckner-Webb said in the release. “I am humbled and honored by the naming of this park. It stands as a testament to the foundation of contribution to community laid by my family across generations.”

Buckner-Webb has served on the boards of several local organizations, including the Women’s and Children’s Alliance, the Idaho Human Rights Education Center and the Andrus Center for Public Policy. She runs a local diversity-training consultancy for business leaders.

Buckner-Webb is also a member of the city’s task force on the Erma Hayman House, a cultural site acquired by the city in 2018 as part of an effort to preserve parts of the ethnically diverse neighborhood along River Street, near downtown.

The park’s name was selected after the city solicited ideas from the public earlier this year, according to the release. The Boise Parks and Recreation Commission and Boise City Council will consider it in the coming weeks before final approval.

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