Andrew Young to speak at Albany State

Andrew Young

Andrew Young

ALBANY, Ga. -- With just over a week before the U.S. presidential election, former U.N. Ambassador Andrew Young will deliver "America On My Mind: A Conversation with Ambassador Andrew Young" at Albany State University on Thursday, from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. in the university's ACAD Auditorium.

The event is free and open to the public.

The civil rights leader worked alongside Martin Luther King Jr. to galvanize a movement that transformed a nation. Young was a key strategist and negotiator during civil rights campaigns in Birmingham and Selma that resulted in the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

An ordained minister, Young is best-known for his work in civil and human rights, and the years spent in public office as a congressman, Atlanta's mayor, a United Nations ambassador, leader of the Atlanta Olympic Games and as an advocate for investment in Africa.

In 1972, Young became the first African-American from the Deep South elected to the U.S. Congress since Reconstruction. He served on the Banking and Urban Affairs and Rules committees.

His support for Jimmy Carter helped the Plains native win the Democratic Party nomination and election to the presidency. In 1977, Carter appointed Young the nation's first African-American Ambassador to the United Nations.

As mayor of Atlanta, during a recession at a time when federal funds to cities decreased, Young turned to international markets for investments, attracting 1,100 new businesses, $70 billion in investments and 1 million jobs to the region. He spearheaded the effort to bring the Centennial Olympic Games to Atlanta and oversaw the largest Olympic Games in history.

Carter awarded the ambassador the Presidential Medal of Freedom, and President Bill Clinton appointed him the founding chair of the Southern African Enterprise Development Fund. Young is the author of three books: "A Way Out of No Way," "An Easy Burden" and "Walk in My Shoes." The Andrew Young Foundation was established to document, preserve and interpret Young's legacy.