Her family says Michaelann Bewsee, the former longtime leader of Springfield's Arise For Social Justice lost a long battle with cancer.
She was 71.
For more than 30 years she led Arise For Social Justice. The group raised awareness on a variety of social and civil justice issues.
Bewsee started the organization back in the 1980's when the state legislature and the Governor at that time began cutting welfare benefits.
She was an outspoken critic of injustices within the nation.
She is known for bringing the plight of many forgotten people to government bodies throughout the region.
Funeral arrangements have not been released yet.