News • February 26, 2020

Honoring civil rights icon John Lewis

February is Black History Month. In honor of this time of year, Equality NC is creating space to honor black icons whose work, live and legacies have proven integral to the advancement of lived equality for marginalized folks. We hope you'll enjoy these weekly profiles throughout the month, and consider the ways in which these individuals have laid the foundation for ENC's work across our state today.

Rep. John Lewis is a man whose legacy is so monumental that its difficult to condense it in a few, short paragraphs. A politician and civil rights leader, Lewis is the United States Representative for Georgia's 5th congressional district, currently serving in his 17th term in the House and having having served since 1987.

Lewis, who was also a Freedom Rider, has played many key roles in the ongoing civil rights movement over the years. Notably, he served as chairman of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) and was one of the "Big Six" leaders of groups who organized the 1963 March on Washington.

Lewis also led the Selma to Montgomery March alongside Hosea Williams on March 7, 1965. After crossing the Edmund Pettus Bridge, the marchers were attacked by state troopers. Lewis was severely beaten and suffered a fractured skull.

Lewis' awards for his great personal sacrifices over the years are numerous, including the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2011. He has given so much for our movement and is still fighting for marginalized folks today even as he battles pancreatic cancer. ENC would never be the organization it is today without leaders like Rep. Lewis dedicating their lives and their work to our movement over the years.

As we head into this election season and fight to maintain the progress won by folks like Rep. Lewis, will you step up and help support the work of ENC? This Black History Month, we're asking you to consider supporting the work of ENC as we continue to fight for a more just and equitable world for black folks, queer folks, and everyone marginalized by power and privilege.

Thank you for everything you do for our organization and our communities. Happy Black History Month!

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