#TJFBHM18: Wyatt Tee Walker, National Civil Rights Leader & Virginia Union University Grad

Wyatt Tee Walker is an African-American pastor and national civil rights leader best known for his accomplishments alongside Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. He was the Chief of Staff to Dr. King, key strategist behind major protests, and highly commended for helping circulate Dr. King’s “Letter From Birmingham Jail.”

Dr. Walker graduated from Virginia Union University, where he met Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Shortly after his graduation, he became heavily involved with the Civil Rights Movement.

From 1961 to 1964, Dr. Walker served as Executive Director of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference. In this position, he created a structured fundraising strategy and organized many monumental protests that became known as Project C. In 1963, he helped organize the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom.

He has held high positions for multiple organizations, including first board chairman of the National Action Network, special assistant on urban affairs to Gov. Nelson A. Rockefeller, and pastor at Canaan Baptist Church of Christ for 37 years.

Throughout this time, he also served on the local branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People as local president, and state director of the Congress of Racial Equality.

Dr. Walker used his voice to preach against intolerance and racial inequality. He was an avid supporter of affordable housing and better schools for people in low-income communities. A lot of his work can be found in published books and articles.

Thank you, Dr. Wyatt Tee Walker, for all that you have done for us.

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