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College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences

Durr Lecture Series

For nearly 30 years, Auburn University at Montgomery has introduced the River Region community to globally recognized thought leaders and guided conversation about social justice and civil liberties through the Clifford Judkins and Virginia Foster Durr Lecture Series.

Founded in 1992, the Durr Lecture Series has introduced the AUM community to a variety of prominent intellectuals, authors, historians, activists, civic leaders and change agents, including such luminaries as Cornel West, Art Buchwald, Lady Bird Johnson, Fred Gray, Studs Terkel, Rev. Fred Shuttlesworth and Congressman John Lewis. Guest lecturers discuss aspects of the constitutional protection of civil liberties and other timely, relevant issues. The lectures are free and open to the public.

The College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences offers students a traditional liberal arts education to meet the needs of the 21st century, allowing them to compete for a variety of careers in an increasingly complex and evolving world.

College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences

About the Durrs

Born in Montgomery, the late Clifford Durr rose to prominence as a lawyer who defended individuals accused of “disloyalty” during the New Deal and McCarthy eras. In 1926, he married Virginia Foster Durr, a Birmingham native and close friend of civil rights icon Rosa Parks and former First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt. Mrs. Durr attended Wellesley College in Massachusetts, an experience that inspired her to question segregation and to become a civil rights activist.

Mr. Durr represented Parks in her challenge of segregation laws that led to the Montgomery Bus Boycott of 1955-1956. Clifford and Virginia Durr also knew Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and housed many volunteers who participated in the 1965 Selma to Montgomery march.

The 2019 Clifford and Virginia Durr Lecture at AUM will be held in the fall of 2019 with the speaker to be announced.

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