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Hall of Fame 2012

Dr. Jesse Harris

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Dr. Jesse Harris, 1941-2012 Louisville, KY. He spent his career as an organizer for the United Food and Commercial Workers Union Local 227 in Kentucky to build bridges with other organizations that protect low-income people, children, women and minorities who had been discriminated against at their workplaces, in their homes, and by their government and neighbors. He used his Gospel music radio show on WLOU 1350 in Louisville to bring together people of all races, genders, nationalities and religions. He helped union leaders join forces with the NAACP, the Justice Resource Center, the Kentucky Alliance and other groups to protest racism and sexism.  He began civil rights activism in 1974 when he became secretary-treasurer of a group of black men in his native Henry County, Ky., called People for Progress.  In 1977, the Henry County Judge-Executive appointed Mr. Harris to open the first Henry County Youth Service Bureau to keep African American students in school and off the streets.  In 2011, he organized a rally in Louisville that educated 2,500 people about plans to redistrict Metro Council One in Louisville, a majority African American section of town. He was the founder and president of Faces of Our Children Sickle Cell Foundation and founder of the nation's first and only Sickle Cell Choir.

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Priscilla Johnson
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Marcellus Mayes


Last Updated 11/5/2012
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