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2023 Armstrong-Branch Distinguished Lecture

The youngest daughter of the American Civil Rights Movement Co-Founder, Rev. Dr. Ralph David and Mrs. Juanita Jones Abernathy, and goddaughter to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Donzaleigh Abernathy, will be the presenter for The University of Southern Mississippi’s 2023 Armstrong-Branch Distinguished Lecture Series.

Abernathy authored Partners to History: Martin Luther King Jr., Ralph David Abernathy, and the Civil Rights Movement, which was nominated as a “Best Book for Young Adults” by the American Library Association. She was a contributing author to the Smithsonian Institute’s book, In the Spirit of Martin. She was one of the leading actors in Gods and Generals. She starred as the leading lady in the HBO film Don King: Only in America. She also starred in Miss Evers’ Boys and NBC’s The Tempest and Murder in Mississippi.

Established in 1993, this event honors Gwendolyn Elaine Armstrong-Chamberlain and Raylawni Adams-Branch, who integrated USM when they enrolled at the University in September 1965. The lecture is scheduled for Tuesday, March 7, at 7 p.m. in the Thad Cochran Center Ballrooms. Admission is free and open to the public.

Tuesday, March 7 at 7:00pm

Thad Cochran Center, Ballrooms
121 West Memorial Drive, Hattiesburg, MS 39406

Event Type

Lectures and Presentations

Target Audience

General Public


Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

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