GREENSBORO — Journalist Roland S. Martin will be the keynote speaker for the annual Sit-In Commemorative Program to be held Jan. 31 at N.C. A&T.
Martin is the host and managing editor of #RolandMartinUnfiltered, a daily digital show that covers news, politics, entertainment, sports and culture from an African American point of view. Martin is a former CNN contributor and news show host on cable network TV One. He's also an author and award-winning journalist who in 2013 was named Journalist of the Year by the National Association of Black Journalists.
The Jan. 31 commemoration will begin with breakfast at 7 a.m. at the Alumni-Foundation Event Center on the A&T campus followed by the program and Martin's talk at 8 a.m. A wreath will be laid at the February One Monument in front of the Dudley Building at 10 a.m. A panel discussion will start at 10:30 a.m. in Harrison Auditorium.
This year's event marks the 60th anniversary of the sit-ins at the former F.W. Woolworth store, now the International Civil Rights Center & Museum, in downtown Greensboro. Four A&T freshmen — Jibreel Khazan (formally Ezell Blair Jr.), Joseph McNeil, the late Franklin McCain and the late David Richmond — conducted the first Greensboro sit-in at the whites-only lunch counter on Feb. 1, 1960. Their nonviolent actions are considered the catalyst to a movement that spread across the South as African Americans sat down at segregated lunch counters to protest unequal public accommodations.
Free tickets for the breakfast and program will be available starting at 9 a.m. Monday. Tickets will be available at the University Ticket Office in Brown Hall. Call 336-334-7749 for more details.