Gospel artist Yolanda Adams and “Greenleaf” actor Keith David are set to perform at the 96th birthday celebration of civil rights veteran the Rev. Joseph Lowery on Oct. 4 at the Rialto Center for the Arts at Georgia State University.
The event, hosted by the Joseph and Evelyn Lowery Institute for Justice & Human Rights, will begin at 6 p.m. followed by the celebration at 7 p.m. It’s theme is “Grounded in History: Soaring Towards the Future.”
Among those being honored during the birthday fete are “Think Like A Man” producer, Will Packer; pastor and activist, the Rev. William Barber; and attorney Angela Rye.
Lowery is known as one of the deans of the U.S. civil rights movement, a minister and social activist. At 95, Lowery is still keenly interested in the social and political goings-on across the nation, especially rising racial divisiveness.
He recently endorsed Stacey Abrams in the race for Georgia governor and also Atlanta City Council President Ceasar Mitchell for mayor, both hotly contested elections.
Adams is a five-time gospel Grammy winner and David, an Emmy winner, plays Bishop James Greenleaf on OWN’s popular series, “Greenleaf.”
The musical tribute, produced by Kenneth Green, will highlight milestones in Lowery’s lifelong commitment to the nonviolent fight for voting rights, economic equality and social justice. Nearly 100 of the Lowery Institute’s change agents will take part in the program. Change agents are college students trained at the Lowery Institute then assigned to elementary, middle and high schools to teach the principles of nonviolence coupled with conflict management and social and self-awareness.
Barber is pastor of Greenleaf Christian Church, Disciples of Christ in Goldsboro, N.C. and leader of the Forward Together Moral Movement that launched the Moral Monday protests.
Angela Rye will receive the Social Justice Award. The CNN political commentator and NPR analyst is the CEO of IMPACT Strategies, a nonprofit organization that seeks to encourage young professionals in economic empowerment, civic engagement, and political involvement.
Will Packer will recieve the Servant Leadership award, Will Packer. The Emmy-nominated producer’s most recent film, “Girls Trip”, is the first entirely black-led movie to make more than $130 million. Packer also served as executive producer of “Roots,” a remake of one of the most celebrated TV programs of all time.
The birthday celebration raises funds to support the work of the Lowery Institute, a nonprofit established to ensure the continuity of the advocacy of Lowery and his wife, the late Evelyn Gibson Lowery.