Susan L. Taylor will be the keynote speaker for the annual University of Southern Indiana Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Luncheon at 11 a.m. Monday, January 21, in Carter Hall in the University Center.
Taylor is synonymous with Essence magazine, as the driving force behind one of the most celebrated African American-owned businesses in history. A legend in the magazine publishing world, she served as fashion and beauty editor, editor-in-chief, editorial director, and authored one of the magazine's most popular columns "In the Spirit" for 27 years.
Taylor is the first and only African American woman to be recognized by the Magazine Publishers of America with the Henry Johnson Fisher Award and the first to be inducted into the American Society of Magazine Editors Hall of Fame. She is the recipient of the NAACP President's Award for visionary leadership and holds honorary degrees from more than a dozen colleges and universities.
An avid supporter of a host of organizations dedicated to moving the African American community forward, her focus today is the national Cares Mentoring Movement, which is a campaign to recruit one million adults to help secure children who are in peril and losing ground. The goal of the movement is to increase high school graduation rates among African American students and end violence in African American communities.
Taylor is the co-founder of The Future PAC, the first national political action committee devoted to providing a network of support and sources of funding for progressive African American women seeking federal and state-level political offices.
As co-chair of the non-profit organization Shared Interest, Taylor is leading a capital campaign to raise money to develop housing in rural areas of South Africa.
She currently serves on the boards of the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies and the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center.
Following the luncheon and keynote address will be a book signing by Taylor, author of In the Spirit: The Inspirational Writings of Susan L. Taylor; Lessons in Living; Confirmation: The Spiritual Wisdom That Has Shaped Our Lives; and All About Love, Favorite Selections from In the Spirit on Living Fearless.
Tickets can be purchased by USI students for $5, USI employees for $10, and the general public for $15, in USI Multicultural Center in University Center East.
The event is sponsored by the USI Foundation, Scripps Howard Center for Media Studies, USI Service Learning Department, USI Black Student Union, and USI Multicultural Center.
For more information, contact USI Multicultural Center at 812/465-7188.
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