11-19-2017  9:31 am      •     
MLK Breakfast
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SEI, Sunshine Division Offer Thanksgiving Meals to Families in Need

Turkeys are being provided to fill 200 Thanksgiving food boxes for SEI families ...

NAACP Portland Monthly Meeting Nov. 18

Monthly general membership meeting takes place on Saturday, 12 - 2 p.m. ...

Multnomah County Animal Services Waives Adoption Fees Nov. 17

Special runs from 12 p.m. to 7 p.m. Friday ...

Fitzpatrick Presents 'Pathway 1000' Plan Before City Council

Plan would restore involuntary displacement by building 80 homes per year ...

Sisters Network to Hold Monthly Meeting Nov. 11

Meeting to take place Saturday morning at June Key Delta Center ...



Local Author Visits North Portland Library

Renee Watson teaches students and educators about the power of writing ...

Is the FBI’s New Focus on “Black Identity Extremists” the New COINTELPRO?

Rep. Cedric L. Richmond (D-La.) talks about the FBI’s misguided report on “Black Identity Extremism” and negative Facebook ads. ...

ACA Enrollment Surging, Even Though It Ends Dec. 15

NNPA contributing writer Cash Michaels writes about enrollment efforts ...

Blacks Often Pay Higher Fees for Car Purchases than Whites

Charlene Crowell explains why Black consumers often pay higher fees than White consumers, because of “add-on” products. ...



Ben Chavis

The freedom struggle and Civil Rights Movement of Black people in America and throughout the world have lost another courageous, iconic, freedom fighter, journalist and leader. The National Newspaper Publishers Association (NNPA) salutes, respects, and supports the freedom-fighting legacy of George Edward Curry.

NNPA publishers, editors, journalists, and photographers from across the nation attended the “Celebration of Life” home-going service for George Curry in Tuscaloosa, Alabama at Weeping Mary Baptist Church on Saturday, August 27, 2016. George at the age of 69 died from heart failure on August 20, 2016 in Takoma Park, Maryland.

George Curry was our beloved Editor-In-Chief of the NNPA News Wire Service and after decades of outstanding contributions and service to the Black Press in America, George evolved to be admired by fellow journalists as the “Dean of Black Press Columnists.” As a foot soldier in the Civil Rights Movement in the 1960s, I personally have been blessed to have known and worked with George Curry as a fearlessly effective freedom fighter.

If I could find one word in the English language to describe the professional and brotherly tenacity of George Curry, it would be “courageous.” He used his pen and his wit to openly challenge injustice in the face and presence of oppression. George had the courage to both write and speak truth to power without compromise of principle or ethics.

Reverend Jesse Jackson and Reverend Al Sharpton both travelled to Tuscaloosa to pay tribute and to eulogize the memory and legacy of George Curry. Rev. Jackson affirmed, “George was a freedom fighter.” Dr. Charles Steele Jr, President of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC), also a native of Tuscaloosa and lifelong friend of George paid tribute to Curry’s leadership and activism as a “freedom movement” journalist.

In the eulogy rendered last Saturday, Rev. Sharpton said that, “George never knew he was much more of a minister to me than I ever was to him…George Curry not only helped to mentor and bring along students and the next generation, but he also did it to many of us that you see out there on the front line.” Sharpton concluded that Curry was “part of a long tradition, but he was one of a kind.”

Roland Martin, accomplished news anchor for TV One and former editor of the Chicago Defender, as well as a lifelong colleague of George Curry, passionately stated, “There was no newspaper, no magazine George Curry could not have worked for, but he chose to work in Black media…He chose to do that, because he said there has to be an independent voice that is unapologetic, that thinks about Black people from the moment they wake up to the moment they go to sleep.”

The passing of George Curry now raises the question of “Who will take his pen?” Who will step forward to keep the freedom-fighting legacy of George Curry alive today and into the future? Before George died, he had established EmergeNewsOnline.com. The NNPA supports George’s legacy and we encourage everyone to support Emerge News Online to ensure that what George envisioned and worked hard to establish will continue to grow and be successful in the marketplace.

In my remarks on behalf of the NNPA at the “Celebration of the Life of George Curry,” I shared that, “I have been in the presence of Malcolm X. I have been in the presence of The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. I have been in the presence of the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan. I’ve been in the presence of some of our giants, male and female, but I want to say on this public record, in my life, I’ve never met a brother that’s had more courage than George Curry.”

As we face the immediate future, let us all first be thankful that we had the opportunity and blessing to work with George Curry. But we must show our gratitude by making sure that his courageous example of journalism continues. There is an African proverb that says “Freedom fighters do not in spirit pass away, their spirit lives to inspire the next generation of freedom fighters.”

We all know that George Curry supported mentoring and guiding the development of young journalists who are committed to the Black Press. That’s why the NNPA’s Discover the Unexpected (DTU) Journalism Fellowship program is so important. May these young journalists and others be guided by the great example of George Curry.


Dr. Benjamin F. Chavis, Jr. is the President and CEO of the National Newspaper Publishers Association (NNPA) and can be reached for national advertisement sales and partnership proposals at: dr.bchavis@nnpa.org; and for lectures and other professional consultations at: http://drbenjaminfchavisjr.wix.com/drbfc.

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