Julian Bond, whose civil rights work first brought him to national prominence in the 1960s, will deliver the inaugural Martin Luther King, Jr. Commemorative Address at the University of Rochester.
His talk on "Civil Rights, Now and Then" will be presented at 6 p.m. Friday, Jan. 26, in Strong Auditorium on the River Campus. The event is free and open to the public.
"Since his college days, Julian Bond was at the center of the civil rights movement," said Norman Burnett, director of the University's Office of Minority Student Affairs. "He campaigned for economic justice and peace, he got arrested participating in non-violent anti-segregation protests, and he worked to pass laws helping consumers, children, and youth. We're honored that he'll present the first Martin Luther King, Jr. Commemorative Address to pay tribute to Dr. King's legacy."
While a student at Morehouse College, Bond helped found the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee in 1960 and served as its communications director. He took part in protests and voter registration campaigns throughout the South.
Elected in 1965 to a one-year term in the Georgia House of Representatives, Bond was prevented from taking his seat by members who objected to his opposition to the Vietnam War. He was re-elected the following year and unseated again, and seated only after a third election and a unanimous decision of the United States Supreme Court.
Bond was co-chair of a challenge delegation from Georgia to the 1968 Democratic Convention, where he was nominated for vice president but had to decline because he was too young.
A commentator on America's Black Forum, the oldest black-owned show in television syndication, Bond has narrated numerous documentaries, including the Academy Award-winning A Time For Justice and the critically acclaimed PBS series Eyes on the Prize.
Bond is chairman of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People and is a Distinguished Professor at American University in Washington, D.C., and a history professor at the University of Virginia. His talk at the University of Rochester is sponsored by the College Diversity Roundtable and the President's Office.