Birmingham, AL, Sept 15, 2013: Today the city of Birmingham honors the memories of four black girls who were killed by white supremacists in a bombing at the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church. The city of Birmingham has been commemorating its “50 Years Forward” campaign with various events that highlight the city’s painful history and the current state of the city as efforts continue towards meaningful change.
One group that has taken the lead in the commemorative events is the Birmingham Association of Black Journalists (BABJ). The BABJ held a two–day conference on the weekend of September 6 and 7, honoring members of the media who played a vital role in the civil rights era. Scholarships were awarded to deserving students at the event. “We gave out $3,000 in scholarships to students,” said President of the Birmingham Association of Black Journalists Linda White.
The event began with the Mountaintop Awards Ceremony, which was held on Friday, September 6, 2013 at 6:00 pm in the Harbert Center. CNN’ Anchor Don Lemon, a former Birmingham anchor, was the featured speaker. The honorees included Emory O. Jackson, crusading editor of the Birmingham World newspaper, Shelley Stewart, entrepreneur and radio personality and Dr. Jessie Lewis, Sr., publisher of The Birmingham Times. The three received special recognition for their courage in covering events that affected the black community during a period when other media outlets did not.
On Saturday, September 7, 2013, the “Standing on their Shoulders” Conference was held from 8:00 am to 1:00 pm at The Birmingham News. The conference featured Pulitzer Prize-winning author Hank Klibanoff, whose book, “The Race Beat,” chronicles how the media covered the civil rights movement from Brown vs. the Board of Education to the Selma-to-Montgomery march. Also, former U.S. Attorney Doug Jones discussed the role the media played in bringing the 16th Street Baptist Church bombers to justice.
To learn more about the BABJ and its’ upcoming events, contact BABJ Chapter President Linda White at email@example.com, Tel: (205) 410-3406 or Event Committee Chair Willie Chriesman at firstname.lastname@example.org, Tel: (205) 223-3010.-OnPointPress.net.