The National Center for Civil and Human Rights kicked off a two day ground breaking celebration with the presentation of Speak Truth to Power: Voices from Beyond the Darkat the Rialto Center for the Arts at Georgia State. This play by Ariel Dorfman was based on the book by Kerry Kennedy, and directed by Atlanta’s own Susan Booth of the Alliance Theater. A star-studded cast including Malcom-Jamal Warner, Lynn Whitfield, Anthony Azizi, Jaime Cepero, Alexis Bledel, Mitchell Anderson and Atlanta’s own Ali Amin Carter staged this powerful theatrical presentation based upon interviews with over 50 human rights activists from around the world.
The official ground breaking ceremony on Wednesday again provided a glimpse of the Center’s future activities once it opens in 2014. The guest list at the Ground Breaking Ceremony included key stakeholders from community and corporate levels as well as top city officials including mayors, Reed, Franklin, Young and Massel. Guests were treated to a musical performance by international singing duo Les Nubians accompanied by local favorite Russel Gunn.
Politicians and corporate sponsors spoke of their commitment to and the relevance of the Center. Community activists and civil rights leaders were also heavily represented and provided their support of the Center.
The National Center for Civil and Human Rights is slated to open in 2014. It will be located at Pemberton Place near the Aquarium and the World of Coca Cola on a parcel of land donated by Coke in 2008. The 35,000 square foot LEED certified facility will house the MLK Papers. The 18,00 square foot first phase will include exhibit and event space, and open in 2014. The NCCHR will not only honor the past but also shape the present and future and continue the tradition of Atlanta representing a launch pad for both civil and human rights.
Click the image below for a slideshow of the National Center for Civil and Human Rights Groundbreaking.