Former UN Ambassador Andrew Young, who stood side by side with Martin Luther King Jr. in the civil rights struggles of the 1960s, will be the featured speaker at UMass Dartmouth's 9th annual MLK breakfast on January 28 at 8:30 a.m. at the University's Woodland Commons.
"Andrew Young is one of the true champions of the civil rights movement and we are very fortunate as a University and as a community to have this opportunity to hear his perspective on both past and current events,'' UMass Dartmouth Chancellor Jean F. MacCormack said.
The breakfast will also feature the presentation of the University's Drum Major For Justice Awards to community leaders who will be announced at a later date.
Following the event, Ambassador Young will hold book signing featuring the books "Walk in My Shoes: Conversations Between a Civil Rights Legend and His Godson on the Journey Ahead" and "An Easy Burden: The Civil Rights Movement and the Transformation of America."
Tickets for the event are $20 for the public, UMD Faculty & Staff; and $10 for students. Corporations and organizations may reserve a table of eight for $160.
Young was a key strategist and negotiator during the Civil Rights Campaigns in Birmingham and Selma that resulted in the passage Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965.
He was elected to the U.S. Congress in 1972 and served on the Banking and Urban Affairs and Rules Committees, sponsoring legislation that established a U.S. Institute for Peace, The African Development Bank and the Chattahoochee River National Park, while negotiating federal funds for MARTA, the Atlanta highway system and a new international airport for Atlanta.
In 1977, President Carter appointed Young to serve as U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations where he negotiated an end to white-minority rule in Namibia and Zimbabwe and brought Carter's emphasis on human rights to international diplomacy.
Ambassador Young's leadership as Mayor of Atlanta took place during a recession and a reduction in federal funds for cities. He turned to international markets for investments in Atlanta attracting 1,100 new businesses, $70 billion in investment adding one million jobs to the region. He developed public-private partnerships to leverage public dollars for the preservation of Zoo Atlanta.