Birmingham, Alabama
Feb 4-7, 2012


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4:00-6:00 pm
Sunday, February 5, 2012
Medical Forum Conference Center

50 Years After Birmingham:
Reflections on the Changes in the Conditions of People
Especially in Rural Alabama

         May 14th, 2011 marked the fiftieth anniversary of the Freedom Riders arriving in Birmingham. Over the next few years we will celebrate other anniversaries in Alabama of a half century since profound events of the Civil Rights Movement – Bombing of the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church, writing of the “Letter from the Birmingham Jail”, Selma-to-Montgomery Voting Rights March.

        These events helped change Alabama and the nation forever. They were secured by a grass roots movement of ordinary people who gave their time, courage, resources and sometimes blood to make the South and the nation move closer to the promises of democracy and justice for all people. They were part of the broader social justice and civil rights movement that began then and has continued until the present time.

        Rural people and communities, including Black and other limited resources farmers and their neighbors were a part of this struggle and played a role in advancing the movement in hundreds of smaller rural communities across the South.

        The panel, which has rich experience with these struggles, will reflect on this history, the progress that has been made and the on-going challenges and work that still needs to be done.

Among the panelists will be: 

  1. Scott Douglas, Executive Director
    Greater Birmingham Ministries
    Birmingham, Alabama

 - Experience in Birmingham since the 1960’s dealing with civil and human rights issues 

  1. State Senator Hank Sanders
    Selma, Alabama

-      First Black State Senator from Selma, since Reconstruction, has served since 1986; Class Counsel in Pigford Black Farmers Case; helped to start the National Voting Rights Museum, Black Belt Community Foundation, Black Belt Action Commission and many other community based organizations 

  1. Odessa Woodfolk
    Community leader and founder of the Birmingham Civil Rights Museum
  1. John Zippert, Director of Program Operations
    Federation of Southern Cooperatives/Land Assistance Fund
    Epes, Alabama


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