seal  Purdue News

August 25, 2003

Civil rights movement icon to speak at Purdue

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – A minister widely regarded as one of the civil rights movement's "Big Three" will speak at Purdue University on Wednesday, Sept. 10.

Rev. Fred Shuttlesworth

The Rev. Fred Shuttlesworth, who led the movement to end segregation in Birmingham, Ala., along with Martin Luther King Jr. and Ralph Abernathy, will speak about civil rights at 7 p.m. in Stewart Center, Room 218. The speech is free and open to the public.

Shuttlesworth, who currently serves as pastor of the Greater New Light Baptist Church in Cincinnati, founded the Alabama Christian Movement for Human Rights and was a co-founder of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference. He also helped the Congress on Racial Equality organize its "freedom rides" campaign.

During the height of the movement in the early '60s, Shuttlesworth was jailed more than 20 times and knocked unconscious with a high-pressure fire hose. His house also was a frequent target of bomb attacks. Shuttlesworth said this only served to reinforce his convictions.

Renee Thomas, Black Cultural Center director, said Shuttlesworth continues to inspire and motivate.

"Shuttlesworth is a man of extraordinary courage and a fearless advocate for racial justice," Thomas said. "He led many non-violent protests, which ultimately caused the nation to live by its creed of freedom and justice for all citizens."

An interview with Shuttlesworth also will be broadcast on WBAA's "AM 920 Magazine" at 2:30 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 10.

CONTACT: Thomas (765) 494-3091,

NOTE TO JOURNALISTS: For assistance, contact Black Cultural Center director Renee Thomas at (765) 494-3091.


Purdue News Service: (765) 494-2096;

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