Sen. Alice Harden Dies

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State Sen. Alice Harden, a Democrat from Jackson who fought for better public and higher education programs, has died. She was 64.

Her death was announced Thursday by Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves. Funeral arrangements are pending.

Harden had served in the Senate since 1988. She had served as chairman of both the education and universities and colleges committees.

"Sen. Alice Harden was a pioneer for civil rights and a staunch supporter of public education," said Gov. Phil Bryant. "She served her constituents well and will certainly be missed. I had the pleasure to work with her during my term as lieutenant governor and was always impressed with her determination to stand for her beliefs. Deborah and I are praying for her friends and family."

Harden was re-elected in 2011 and was serving on the appropriations and education committees.

Harden, a former teacher, was a graduate of Jackson State University.

Survivors include her husband, Dennis, and a daughter.