Marquette to Honor Civil Rights Leader and Congressman
John Lewis will receive Les Aspin Democracy Award
Released: Sept. 11, 2006
Congressman and noted civil rights leader John Lewis
Marquette University Les Aspin Center for Government Democracy Award Luncheon
||Monday, Sept. 18, 2006 at noon
Marquette University Alumni Memorial Union, Ballrooms, 3rd floor 1442 W. Wisconsin Avenue.
***Media interested in attending or interviewing Congressman Lewis should call Brigid O’Brien Miller at 414-288-7445.
Noted civil rights leader U.S. Rep. John Lewis of Georgia will be honored with the Les Aspin Democracy Award by the Marquette University Les Aspin Center for Government at a luncheon in Milwaukee on Monday, Sept.18, at noon.
A courageous leader during the Civil Rights Movement, John Lewis has dedicated his life to protecting human rights, securing civil liberties, and building what he calls "The Beloved Community" in America. He was a lead organizer and keynote speaker at the historic March on Washington in August 1963. In 1964, Lewis coordinated voter registration drives and community action programs during the Mississippi Freedom Summer. The following year, Lewis led more than 600 peaceful protestors across the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama on March 7, 1965. They intended to march from Selma to Montgomery to demonstrate the need for voting rights in the state. The marchers were attacked by Alabama state troopers in a confrontation that became known as "Bloody Sunday." News broadcasts and photographs revealing the cruelty of the segregated South helped hasten the passage of the Voting Rights Act of 1965.
After serving on the Atlanta City Council, Lewis was elected to Congress in November 1986 and has served as U.S. Representative of Georgia's Fifth Congressional District since then. That district includes the entire city of Atlanta, Georgia and parts of Fulton, DeKalb and Clayton counties.
This Aspin Democracy award is bestowed upon individuals who, in the opinion of the National Board of Visitors of the Marquette University Les Aspin Center for Government and the President of the university, have made life-time contributions of outstanding merit to the promotion of democracy and its values. Past Aspin Center honorees have included Ambassador Richard Holbrooke, U.S. Senators Robert and Elizabeth Dole, U.S. Senator Daniel Inouye and Gen. Brent Scowcroft.
About the Les Aspin Center for Government
The Les Aspin Center for Government offers educational internships and training at the federal, local and international levels of government. At the D.C. program, students live in an academic community just blocks from the Capitol. They serve as interns in congressional offices, the White House, and a variety of other governmental agencies and departments. In addition to attending classes at the center, students visit government agencies to gain key insiders' perspectives on American democracy. The center is named to honor Les Aspin, a former faculty member of Marquette, member of Congress and secretary of defense from 1993-94.
The Kleczka Internship Program is the Les Aspin Center for Government’s local initiative. The program provides internships for academically talented students, particularly those with financial need, who wish to work in public service at the state and local levels.
The Africa Program brings government leaders from Ghana, Kenya, Mali, Nigeria, Uganda and Tanzania to the Les Aspin Center for Government to learn the principals of democracy and how to put them into action in their respective countries. Participants are immersed in a six week learning experience at the Aspin Center in Washington, D.C. and on the Marquette campus in Milwaukee.
For more information, please visit the Web site.
Office of Marketing and Communication Contacts
Brigid O'Brien Miller
Director of University Communication
Phone: (414) 288-7445
Sr. Media Relations Specialist
Phone: (414) 288-0286