(901) 761-0810

Toward Justice: A City-Wide Upstandersí Project


Participating agencies:

All events are FREE (open to all) and will take place at the Memphis Jewish Community Center.

Bob Zellner
Keynote speaker
May 2 @ 7:00 pm

Bob is one of the most influential leaders in the Civil Rights Movement, from the 1960s to today. The son and grandson of Ku Klux Klan members, he risked his life- and nearly lost it- many times in the fight to achieve The Second Emancipation. As an organizer of The Freedom Rides of 1961 and the first white southerner to serve as field secretary for the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, he worked alongside Martin Luther King Jr., John Lewis, Rosa Parks, and many other civil rights leaders.

Bob captivates audiences with the untold stories of the Civil Rights Movement and his dedication to fighting for the rights of others. Drawing on decades of experience guiding the movement and his ongoing active role, he presents a modern-day message for combating deep-seated racism, discrimination and prejudice, and sparking widespread social change.

Carl E. Moore
Exhibit: May 1–31
Opening Reception: May 3 • 5:30-7:30pm

Artist’s Statement:
The work I’ve created over the last few years has dealt with identity and color. During this process my goal was to compare social ideologies about race, stereotypes, and belief systems to everyday colors and the perception of these colors in our environment. As part of my process, Black has always been a color of identity for Black people, Black American, African American, Negro etc. Just as White, for Caucasian or those of Anglo or European descent, Red as a color for Native Americans (Also deemed as inappropriate) and Brown for the Latino population. The color black has always had a negative representation for being compared to death, bad or poor quality and even race. I’ve taken the color black and placed it into the environment, and used it as part of the emotional conversation. The goal is to make the dialogue more about the artwork and the color of the characters, even though the characters are part of the narrative.

Besa: The Promise
Film Screening
May 15 @ 7:00 pm

Besa: The Promise weaves Albania’s heroism in WWII through the journeys of two men. The first is Norman Gershman, a renowned Jewish-American photographer determined to document first-person accounts of the Albanian Muslims who rescued Jews during the Holocaust.

The other is Rexhep Hoxha, a Muslim-Albanian. Rexhep must fulfill the promise he made to a Jewish family his father rescued during the Holocaust and return to them a set of Hebrew prayer books they left behind.

Seating is limited. Reservations are recommended.

I Am Your Protector
May 1–31

This powerful storytelling and photography exhibit will be displayed to share diverse stories of people who have been a “protector” of someone who is different than them.

Barrier Free
May 1–31

Barrier Free is a socially-engaged art installation created by Memphis-based artist Yancy Villa-Calvo about the impact of barriers. This large installation includes three main elements: a physical barrier with portraits of families and individuals, free standing life-size mirror and cut-out silhouettes of families surrounding the wall, and an actual fence in which people can express a wish, a frustration, a solution, a thought or a prayer.

Yancy Villa-Calvo, B.A., B.F.A., M.B.A.
Yancy was born in Mexico City and has lived and traveled in Latin America, Europe, and Africa. She received her formal art education at Christian Brothers University and Memphis College of Art.
Through multimedia work, she seeks to create awareness, provoke a thought and engage into conversation on issues of social justice and equality. Her work is displayed in private collections in the US, Mexico, Netherlands, Brazil, and Israel. She has been in Memphis for 23 years, where she lives with her husband Mauricio Calvo and their children Anna, Carolina, and Santiago.

Questions? Please contact Marcy Stagner, Program Director for Cultural Arts and Adult Services, at mstagner@jccmemphis.org or (901) 259-9230.

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