Youngest "Little Rock Nine" member to speak Feb. 1 at MSU
The Minot State University Center for Engaged Teaching and Learning and Diversity Committee invite the public to an evening of education and awareness as presented by Congressional Gold Medal recipient Carlotta Walls LaNier. This unique event, which is free and open to the public, is Feb. 1 in Ann Nicole Nelson Hall at 7 p.m.
In 1957, at age 14, LaNier was the youngest "Little Rock Nine" member to integrate Little Rock Central High School, Ark. This act of courage and defiance became the catalyst for change within the American education system. Inspired by Rosa Parks, a civil rights activist, and possessing the desire to get the best education available, LaNier enrolled in the prestigious academic institution.
"Ms. Walls LaNier is an inspiring individual who presents a powerful message of persistence, hope and the value of education," said Beth Odahlen, director of the Center for Engaged Teaching and Learning. "We are extremely excited to welcome her to our campus and provide the MSU and Minot communities with this engaging opportunity."
Anger and violent behavior threatened the Nineís safety and motivated President Dwight D. Eisenhower to dispatch the U.S. Armyís 101st Airborne Division to protect their constitutional rights. LaNier graduated in 1960 and was the first African-American female to graduate from Central High School. She went on to graduate from Colorado State College, now the University of Northern Colorado, in Greeley.
LaNier serves as president of the Little Rock Nine Foundation, a scholarship organization dedicated to ensuring equal access to education. President Bill Clinton awarded the Congressional Gold Medal, the nationís highest civilian award, to The Little Rock Nine in 1999.
Already a sought-after lecturer, LaNier is on a promotional tour of her first book, "A Mighty Long Way: My Journey to Justice of Little Rock Central High School." This gripping memoir offers an inside look at the most famous school integration in American history, and the courage and faith required for the Nine to survive it all. Members of the public may request a free copy of the book by contacting 858-4040, while supplies last.
For questions, about LaNierís visit, contact Odahlen at 858-4040 or email@example.com.