NCBW Remembers Civil Rights Activist Rev. Dr. Cordy Tindell “C.T.” Vivian
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For Further Information Contact: Alfreda Stukes
National Coalition of 100 Black Women, Inc.
Remembers Civil Rights Activist Rev. Dr. Cordy Tindell “C.T.” Vivian
ATLANTA, GA, July 18, 2020 – The National Coalition of 100 Black Women, Inc. (NCBW) Remembers Civil Rights Activist Rev. Dr. Cordy Tindell “C.T.” Vivian.
Today, we remember Rev. Dr. C.T. Vivian, a Civil Rights Activist, Leader and Recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom. Rev. Vivian along with other ministers founded the Nashville Christian Leadership Conference, an affiliate of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC). He participated in the Freedom Rides and worked alongside the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. He joined in his first nonviolent protest, a lunch counter sit-in in Peoria, Illinois, in 1947, according to the National Visionary Leadership Project.
By 1965, Dr. Vivian had become the director of national affiliates for the SCLC when he led a group of people to register to vote in Selma, Alabama. As Sheriff Jim Clark blocked the group, Vivian said in a fiery tone, “We will register to vote because as citizens of the United States we have the right to do it.” Clark responded by beating Vivian until blood dripped off his chin in front of rolling cameras. The images helped galvanize wider support for change.
Dr. Vivian also created a college readiness program with the goal of helping “take care of the kids that were kicked out of school simply because they protested racism.” He founded the Center for Democratic Renewal – National Anti-Klan Network, an anti-racism organization that initially focused on monitoring the Ku Klux Klan. Vivian said they viewed the Center for Democratic Renewal as “the political side” of what they were doing with the SCLC, which was focused on the country’s morality struggles during the civil rights movement.
In 2013, when President Barack Obama placed the Presidential Medal of Freedom around C.T. Vivian’s neck, he said that the preacher and civil rights icon pushed America “closer to our founding ideals.”
The National Coalition of 100 Black Women, Inc., has advocated for more than 35 years to promote leadership development and gender equity in the areas of health, education and economic empowerment for black women and girls. We will continue our advocacy efforts by activating our Right to Vote and encouraging all people to stand up and be counted.
“Leadership is found in the action to defeat that which would defeat you… You are made by the struggles you choose.” – C.T. Vivian
For more information visit the National Coalition of 100 Black Women Inc. at www.ncbw.org.
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