CNN political commentator Bakari Sellers will be the keynote speaker and Michigan Lt. Gov. Garlin Gilchrist II will be a guest speaker at the Freedom Fund Celebration of the Lansing branch of the NAACP this fall.
The virtual event will be telecast from 8-9 p.m. Oct. 16 on WLNS-TV 6, with encore broadcasts scheduled for noon Oct. 17 on WLAJ-TV 53 and 12:30 p.m. Oct. 22 on ELAJ (CW 5). The in-person event was rescheduled as a virtual engagement due to ongoing concerns over the COVID-19 pandemic. The theme of this year’s celebration is “Passion Led Us Here.”
“Comfort talks about change; the uncomfortable makes change,” said Fonda Brewer, chair of the Freedom Fund Celebration. “We stand on the shoulders of a 112-year-old national civil rights organization who has lived many uncomfortable years of discrimination, civil and criminal injustice, infinite inequity in every way. Yet our passion continues to be the voice for the voiceless. We believe uncomfortableness will lead to unity and unity leads to systemic change.”
Sellers made history in 2006 when at age 22 he became the youngest member of the South Carolina state Legislature. Sellers is a voice in the Black community providing in-depth political analysis and social commentary on CNN. A New York Times bestselling author of “My Vanishing Country: A Memoir,” Sellers has been named to Time magazine’s “40 Under 40” in 2010 and 2014. In 2015, he made the “The Root 100” list of the nation’s most influential African Americans. Currently he hosts “The Bakari Sellers Podcast” and practices law with the Strom Law Firm in Columbia, South Carolina.
“Bakari Sellers is a proven leader in our country,” said Brewer. “He gives a voice to the voiceless all the while providing intriguing insight and analysis of the political arena and how it affects our vulnerable communities.”
Gilchrist, a Detroit-area native and software engineer, became the first Black resident to serve as lieutenant governor in Michigan when he took office in 2019.
“Having these two historical voices speak, Lt. Gov. Gilchrist and Mr. Sellers, truly represents the importance of passion to be a servant for the least of us,” Brewer said.
Founded in 1909, the NAACP is the largest and civil rights organization in the nation. For more information on the Freedom Fund Celebration and how to submit sponsorships and donations, visit Eventbrite.