The Alabama New South Coalition (ANSC) will hold its Fall Convention on Saturday, October 1, 2016 at the Wind Creek Casino Entertainment Center meeting room in Wetumpka, Alabama. Registration begins at 8:00 AM with breakfast and the convention convenes at 8:45 AM.
The theme of the convention is “Lifting our Communities; Saving Ourselves with Our Vote”. Most of the meeting will deal with voter education, registration and get-out-the-vote planning for the critical General Election on November 8, 2016, which is less than forty days away.
The meeting features a panel discussion on Voter Registration, Education and Mobilization to help prepare and encourage ANSC members statewide to actively participate in the upcoming elections. Senator Hank Sanders of Selma and a founder of ANSC will moderate the panel.
Among the panelists are: Rev. Kenneth Glasgow from Dothan, Alabama who has been an activist in promoting the restoration of voting rights for the previously incarcerated; Jerome Gray, a community expert on voter involvement; Attorney Faya Rose Toure of Selma, who has worked on many grassroots electoral and community leadership development efforts; two Greene countians – Dr. Carol Zippert and Commissioner Lester Brown complete the panel and will share their experiences.
The ANSC will adjourn its meeting to hold a meeting of its sister organization, the Alabama New South Alliance (ANSA), which will screen and endorse national and statewide candidates for the coming election. ANSA endorsed Hillary Clinton for the March 1 Democratic Primary and is expected to endorse the Clinton-Kaine ticket for the November General Election as well as Congressional and statewide candidates who will be on the ballot.
Absentee balloting is already underway in Alabama for the November elections and October 24 is the last day to register to be able to vote in November.
The ANSC Luncheon speaker is John Tanner a retired Chief of the Voting Rights Division in the U. S. Justice Department who will speak on voting rights issues in the aftermath of the Shelby vs. Holder Supreme Court decision which gutted the Section 4 and 5 pre-clearance provisions of the Voting Rights Act.
John Tanner began his work in voting rights as a teenager in Birmingham during the mid-1960s, when he assisted the SCLC and other groups with voter registration drives and other activities.
After college and the Army, he joined the Voting Section of the Justice Department as a paralegal and went to law school at night at American University. Upon graduation he was accepted as an attorney in the Department under the Honors Program, and for many years was the principal Department of Justice attorney for voting rights enforcement in Alabama.
In 1995, he moved to prosecute police brutality and other federal criminal civil rights violations with the Department, and was on the National Church Arson Task Force.
Mr. Tanner returned to the Voting Section in 2002 and became Section Chief in 2005. As Section Chief he led the Voting Section in filing the highest number of lawsuits in its history.
After retiring from the Justice Department, Mr. Tanner began a private law practice from his home in the District of Columbia in which he has represented minority voters in Alabama, Texas, and Georgia.
He also has taught courses and lectured on voting rights and civil rights at the University of Alabama Honors College, Alabama State University, the Cumberland School of Law, and Baylor Law School. He has published numerous articles on voting rights and was the Aaron Henry Lecturer at Mississippi State Valley University. He is a Life Member of the NAACP.
Mr. Tanner has been recognized for his work by a number of African American community groups in Mississippi and Alabama, and by the City Council of the District of Columbia. He also received numerous Department of Justice awards, including the John Doar Award, the Civil Rights Division’s highest honor.
All members and supporters of ANSC are invited to attend the meeting. Registration fee is $25.00, which covers breakfast, lunch and all materials. For more information contact Ms. Shelley Fearson, ANSC Coordinator in Montgomery at 334/262-0932 or AlNewSouth@aol.com.