Around the Miami Valley
7:02 pm
Thu October 3, 2013

Xenia's Anison James Colbert Inducted Into Civil Rights Hall of Fame

A prominent African-American Xenia resident was inducted into the Ohio Civil Rights Hall of Fame Thursday morning.

During the fifth-annual Civil Rights Hall of Fame ceremony at the Ohio Statehouse, Anison James Colbert expressed that the Hall of Fame honor was the best day of his life and told the crowd the motto he's trying to live by.

"Good better best - never let it rest until your good becomes better and your better becomes best," Colbert shared at the ceremony.

Colbert was the first African-American to receive a national funeral director's license and only the second to pass Ohio's funeral service exam. He is the retired director of Xenia's Colbert Funeral Home.

Colbert grew up in Youngstown, but made his mark in Xenia where he served on the city's Civil Rights Commission and was a key figure in obtaining grant funding to help find low income residents and minorities employment in the 1970s.

Colbert's disaster relief work following the devastating Xenia tornado in 1974 earned him recognition by then Ohio governor John Gilligan