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News: Public invited to May 23 lecture by civil rights expert

News: Public invited to May 23 lecture by civil rights expert

As part of the Roane State Community College/Oak Ridge Institute for Continued Learning (ORICL) Lecture Series, Robert J. Booker will present a talk titled 100 Years of the Civil Rights Movement on Thursday, May 23 at 3:00 p.m. in the City Room (A-111) at Roane State. A reception beginning at 2:30 in the visitors’ lobby will precede the lecture.

The event is free and open to the public.

A Knoxville Native, Mr. Booker is a graduate of Knoxville College. He was active in the Sit-in movement during the 1960s. He served three terms in the State Legislature representing Knox County and worked as an administrative assistant to the Knoxville mayor for seven years. Mr. Booker was executive director of the Beck Cultural Exchange Center for seventeen years and has also held positions on the State Civil Service Commission and the Tennessee Committee on Humanities.

He has published five local history books Including Two Hundred Years of Black Culture in Knoxville, Tennessee 1791-1991 and The Heat of a Red Summer, the story of the Knoxville Race Riot of 1919. He wrote weekly columns for the Knoxville Journal for four years and has done weekly columns for the Knoxville News Sentinel since 2003.

Mr. Booker was elected to the Distinguished Service Chapter of the Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity. He is a member of the east Tennessee Writers Hall of Fame. He received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the East Tennessee Historical Society and the Whitney M. Young Lifetime Achievement Award from the Knoxville Area Urban League.

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