Gwen Ifill didn't want it to be a big deal.
The legendary journalist knew she'd served as a trailblazer for women and especially a beacon of what is professionally possible for women of color. But in an interview with The New York Times, she said she was eager for the days when it would not seem "like any breakthrough at all" for a black woman to be anchoring a national news program.
And yet, more than three years after her death, Ifill is still making breakthroughs. This time, on a stamp.
Ifill, who died at the age of 61 after battling cancer, will be memorialized on a new U.S. Postal Service Forever stamp. She'll be the 43rd stamp in the Black Heritage series.
It features a photo of her taken in 2008 by photographer Robert Severi. She looks relaxed, her smile reassuring and her gaze direct and friendly. Essentially, the same image she projected into living rooms for decades as the host of some of television's most respected news programs.
"She touched my life because she was a damn good reporter," Allison Davis, one of the founders of the National Association of Black Journalists told NPR. "She is what everybody should aspire to be."
Ifill started out writing for newspapers at a time when it was rare to have a black woman in the newsroom — the late 1970s.