Some 500 people attended a local Black History Program honoring the mother of the modern-day civil rights movement, Rosa Parks.
Parks refused to surrender her bus seat in December 1955 to a white passenger, spurring the Montgomery, Alabama boycott and other efforts to end segregation.
Two Camden Diocesan officials, Housing Director Curtis H. Johnson and Director of Black Catholic Ministries James E. Andrews, along with other members of Kappa Alpha Psi fraternity, supported their fellow member Rep. John James Conyers, Jr.
Conyers, of Michigan’s 13th congressional district, was the keynote speaker at this 11th annual Black History Month luncheon sponsored by the Rowan University Africana Studies Department. Conyers was elected in 2014 to his 26th consecutive term, making him the first African-American to hold the distinction as dean of Congress.
In March of 1965, Conyers hired Rosa Parks for a job in his Detroit office where she worked and continued her activism until she retired in 1988.
In 2005 Conyers was instrumental in passing a resolution to have Rosa Parks’ body lie in state at the United States Capitol Rotunda, making her the first woman and third non-U.S. government official to be given such a place in history.