Founding member of Kentucky human rights commission dies

ASHLAND, Ky. (AP) — The Kentucky Commission on Human Rights says one of its founding members has died.

Former Ashland Mayor David Welch served on the commission at its inception in 1960, and chaired the commission’s first public hearings supporting equal rights for women and minorities in 1967. Overall he served on the commission for 20 years.

Welch died Saturday. He was 82.

One of the commission’s first discrimination complaints was a request to integrate the public swimming pool in Franklin. Welch was hearing officer in the case, and the pool was integrated upon a ruling of the commission.

Later, as mayor of Ashland from 1976 to 1980, he helped create the Ashland Human Rights local commission.

He was inducted into the inaugural Kentucky Civil Rights Hall of Fame in 2000.

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