Saturday, June 20, 2015 at Peace Prayer Day at Ram Das Puri outside of Espanola, NM, USA
Civil rights leader Reverend Dr. C.T. Vivian is known for his work with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. during the civil rights movement in the 1960s. He was a Freedom Rider and organized sit-ins and other non-violent protests against racial segregation in the South. As a member of the Executive Staff of the SCLC (Southern Christian Leadership Council) he marched with Dr. King in Selma, Montgomery, Chicago, Birmingham, and Washington, D.C. He worked as an organizer for the voter registration drive in Selma, a movement that was the catalyst for the 1965 Voting Rights Act.
In the summer of 1965 Dr. Vivian founded Project Vision, which provided college preparatory support for students and recent high school graduates in Alabama. The success of Project Vision received federal government support to become the widely successful Upward Bound program for youth from poverty backgrounds. Upward Bound recently celebrated its 50th anniversary. He also founded BASIC Diversity Inc. an organization that works to create supportive cross cultural communication within work spaces. The C.T. Vivian Leadership Institute works to create a useful model of leadership culture for the benefit of future organizations and leaders of change.
Most recently President Obama presented Reverend Dr. C.T. Vivian with the Presidential Medal of Freedom, America’s highest civilian honor.