US Congressman and Civil Rights activist John Lewis is set to serve as the 145th commencement speaker at Hampton University this spring.
The son of sharecroppers, Lewis was born in Troy, Alabama. Coined as one of the “Big Six” of the Civil Rights era, as a young boy Lewis was inspired by the events that led up to the Montgomery Bus Boycott, it was then that he decided to join the fight for Civil Rights for African Americans and has been fighting ever since.
A keynote speaker at the historic “March On Washington” Lewis, whose character was portrayed in the film “Selma” served as the chairman of the Student NonViolent Coordinating Committee from 1963 -1966. He was elected into Congress in November of 1986 and has served as U.S. Representative of Georgia’s Fifth Congressional District for the last 29 years. Well versed on the subject of diligence and the HBCU experience, he received his bachelor’s degree in religion and philosophy from Fisk University. His legacy is evident, as he has been awarded more than 50 honorary degrees from prestigious colleges and universities throughout the United States.
Hampton University’s 145th Commencement will take place on May 10,2015 at Armstrong Stadium at 10 a.m.