Legendary Civil Rights Leader to Speak in Kansas City

C.T. Vivian in Kansas City

Legendary civil rights leader Rev. C.T. Vivian is making a special visit to Kansas City to rally support for Kansas City’s fast food and retail workers.  Communities Creating Opportunity (CCO), Metropolitan Missionary Baptist Church, and the Workers Organizing Committee of Kansas City (WOC KC) are holding the mass meeting to kick off a series of events led by fast food and retail workers in the days to follow. These events will place Kansas City alongside New York, Chicago, St. Louis, Milwaukee, Washington D.C. and other major cities whose fast food and retail workers have called for change.

Good Jobs for All Mass Meeting
Monday, July 29 – 6:30 PM
Metropolitan Missionary Baptist Church
2310 Linwood
Kansas City, MO

Free Admission

RSVP: Stand for Dignity

Rally and March for Low Wage Workers
Tuesday, July 30 – 3:30 PM
Gillham Park (40th & Gillham)



Get to know Rev. Vivian (Slideshow)

Dr. Vivian is best known for his work with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. He was National Director of Affiliates, and strategist for every Southern Christian Leadership Conference (S.C.L.C.) organization. He truly helped change the nation: His work in Birmingham helped win the Civil Rights Bill; in Selma, the Voting Rights Bill; and he was deeply involved in other movements such as Nashville, TN; Danville, VA; St. Augustine, FL; and Chicago, IL. Dr. Vivian  won his first non-violent direct action movement in 1947 opening restaurants in Peoria, IL. He is featured throughout PBS’s acclaimed documentary “Eyes On The Prize” (1987 & 2006). PBS later produced a full-length presentation, “The Healing Ministry of the Rev. Dr. C.T. Vivian”. He is also featured as both an activist and analyst in the series, The People’s Century (PBS/WGBH, 1998), and in the Tom Brokaw documentary “King” (History Channel, 2008). After leaving Dr. King’s Executive Staff, Dr. Vivian trained ministers and developed the urban curriculum for seminaries throughout the nation at the Urban Training Center in Chicago. He returned to the realm of seminary education as the Dean of Divinity at Shaw University Seminary. There he originated and acquired funding for an original national level program, the basis of his doctoral work, Seminary Without Walls.

In 2008, Vivian founded the C.T. Vivian Leadership Institute, Inc. to create a model leadership culture for the purpose of training and educating the new generation of grass-roots leaders inspired to mobilize a constituency.  The Institute is based out of Atlanta, Georgia.  More recently, Dr. Vivian received an Honorary Doctorate from Morehouse College (2010), served as National President of S.C.L.C. (2012), and currently serves as Dean of The Urban Institute at The Interdenominational Theological Center in Atlanta, GA.

Notable accomplishments:

  • He has been summoned to provide civil rights counsel to five (5) different U.S. Presidential Administrations (Johnson, Carter, Reagan, Clinton, and Obama).
  • Served as part of a team of religious advisors to President Barack Obama during his successful 2008 campaign.
  • He has advised foreign Heads of State.
  • He has addressed the United Nations.
  • He has addressed the World Baptist Alliance as a keynote speaker during their conference on racism in the world community. Shared the platform with former U.S. President Jimmy Carter.
  • Was Director of what Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. called “The best non-violent movement in the nation”.
  • Served on an independent UN Committee on Human Rights Education.
  • In one year alone he was highlighted in three books, two of which were authored by Pulitzer Prize winners and the other by a U.S. Congressman: The Children, David Habersham; Pillars of Fire, Taylor Branch; and Walking With The Wind, Congressman John Lewis.
  • Highly respected across the racial spectrum. His awards include: The Trumpet Award (2006), The National Jewish Labor Award, and The Martin L. King, Jr. Humanitarian Award.
  • He organized street gangs in Chicago, turning gang members away from violence, and developed a program that earned them jobs.

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