Casey Hayden, born Sandra Cason, was a leading activist for Civil Rights during the 1960's. Born in a segregated part of Eastern Texas, Hayden attended Texas University at Austen and graduated in 1960. It was at university where Hayden became politically active and was a founding member of Students for a Democratic Society (SDS). She went on to work as a volunteer for the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC). Hayden, who was married to Tom Hayden in the 1960's, was a major SNCC contributor, first in Atlanta and then Mississippi.
Casey Hayden worked in Mississippi as a volunteer for the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) during Freedom Summer in 1963. She worked closely with Bob Moses and Jim Forman in coordinating the influx of volunteers into Mississippi to help get African American's registered to vote. Hayden was in Jackson when three volunteers, James Chaney, Andrew Goodman and Michael Schwerner disappeared. Hayden is also remembered for her popular memo, Sex and Caste, which she co-wrote with Mary King in 1965. The memo was distributed within SDS and SNCC and challenged activists to be aware of gender inequality in the Movement and the country. She is also a co-author of Deep in Our Hearts: Nine White Women in the Freedom Movement. Joan C. Browning, another author of this book commented that, "Casey was articulate, poised--I saw in her depth of commitment and generous affection, the embodiment of the beloved community."
Information for this biography was gathered from the following sources: