Claiming the Legacy: Leadership for the Twenty-First Century

  • Lea E. Williams


The civil rights movement of the 1960s freed America from the ignominious shackles of legally enforced racial segregation and discrimination. There were countless African American and white crusaders and martyrs, some well-known and revered, others unsung and anonymous: Rosa Parks, who sparked the Montgomery bus boycott; Addie Mae Collins, Denise McNair, Carole Robertson, and Cynthia Wesley, youngsters killed in the bombing of the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Alabama; Medgar Evers, the NAACP field secretary assassinated in Jackson, Mississippi; James Chaney, Michael Schwerner, and Andrew Goodman, student civil rights demonstrators murdered in the vicinity of Philadelphia, Mississippi; James J. Reeb, a white minister beaten to death for participating in a voter registration campaign in Selma, Alabama; Viola Gregg Liuzzo, a white civil rights advocate from Detroit killed by gunfire on the way to Montgomery following the Selma-to-Montgomery protest march; Jimmie Lee Jackson, a civil rights demonstrator killed by state troopers in Marion, Alabama; James Meredith, the first black man to enroll at the University of Mississippi, wounded by the shotgun fire of a white segregationist during a voting rights march from Memphis, Tennessee, to Jackson, Mississippi; Martin Luther King Jr., the leader of the Montgomery bus boycott, head of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, moral and spiritual force of the modern civil rights movement, assassinated in Memphis; and many other freedom fighters.1


Chief Executive Officer Black Community African American Community Black College Black Church 
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© Lea E. Williams 2009

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  • Lea E. Williams

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