On Friday, April 21, the School of Law hosted the 50th Anniversary Gala: A Legacy Fundraising Event in honor of the first Black graduates at Alabama Law including Michael Anthony Figures, Booker T. Forte, Jr., and Ronald E. Jackson. At the event, the Board of Trustees of the University of Alabama System and the School of Law introduced plans to raise funds to build the Path Makers Legacy Plaza in honor of the first Black Graduates. Read more about the Path Makers Legacy Plaza here.
The Gala program included artistic performances, reflections, and stories from students and alumni of the School of Law. View recordings below. Images of the evening are available here.
Vanessa Leonard, Class of 1994 and member of the Board of Trustees of the University of Alabama System, welcomed attendees to the Gala and reflected on what this Anniversary means to her.
Introducing The 50th Anniversary Gala
Video Narrated by Crystal Armstrong (Class of 2023)
The Honorable John H. England, Jr. (Class of 1974) started law school in 1969 at Alabama Law. However, he was drafted into the U.S. Army during the Vietnam War and served for two years as a military policeman. Following his service, he returned to Alabama Law to complete his J.D. in 1974. Listen to his remarks below.
Original Poetry Reading: Mater Dolorosa
Written & Presented by Kwamena Blankson (Class of 2000), Poet-in-Residence at Ekklesia Contemporary Ballet
Introduced by Professor Anil Mujumar (Class of 2000), Director of Diversity & Inclusion and Assistant Professor of Law in Residence
View the full text of the poem: Mater Dolorosa by Kwamena Blankson.
Kenneth Simon (Class of 1979), a member of the Board of Trustees of the University of Alabama System, shares his stories and reflections.
Lift Every Voice and Sing
Performed by Jada Gotay (First-year Law Student)
Planting Seeds of Hope
Tyger Quarles (First-year Law Student)
If You Could Only See (The Future You’ve Made Possible for Me)
A Letter Written & Read by Kyra Perkins (Class of 2023). Read the full text of the letter: If You Could Only See (the Future You’ve Made Possible for Me).
There is Much Left To Do: Introducing the Path Makers Legacy Plaza
Elizabeth H. Huntley (Class of 1997), Co-Chari, The 50th Anniversary Executive Committee
Read more about the Path Makers Legacy Plaza here.