I volunteered for the Mississippi Freedom Summer Project (MSP) after graduation from Cornell in June 1964. I worked in voter registration and went to orientation at Oxford the first week. There I received my assignment to Greenville. We worked on freedom registration for the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party (MFDP) and the organization of precinct meetings and then the Washington County meeting. I attended the district caucus, state convention in Jackson, and went to Atlantic City. In September I began law school at Stanford.
I returned to Mississippi the summer of 1965 with the Law Students Civil Rights Research Council (LSCRRC). After the Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights under Law rejected my assignment, LSCRRC reassigned me to the National Lawyers Guild. The Guild program in 1965 used member lawyers who volunteered time in Mississippi to identify public facilities that remained segregated after the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and initiate lawsuits as necessary in several different counties for their desegregation.
In 1967 after graduation from law school I moved to Washington, D.C. to work in the anti-poverty program. I practiced corporate law in the city until the National Aeronautics and Space Administration appointed me a federal administrative judge. At the end of March 2006, I retired from the Armed Services Board of Contract Appeals at the U.S. Department of Defense. Much of my time as a trial judge for over 22 years involved the preparation of written decisions of findings of fact and conclusions of law.
I have attended reunions of the MSP volunteers, conferences of the Veterans of the Mississippi Civil Rights Movement, and the SNCC 50th Anniversary conference in 2010. My library includes many of the books written about the Movement, particularly SNCC and Mississippi.
In 2006 I began writing a memoir of my experiences in the civil rights movement. My interest is the MFDP Convention Challenge at the Democratic National Convention in Atlantic City, New Jersey in August 1964 which I believe has been frequently misrepresented in brief accounts in the history books. Researching the five-day confrontation with President Lyndon B. Johnson in newly available documentation has revealed an interesting story.
I would like to connect with SNCC and CORE staff and other summer volunteers who can share their documents and stories to help me present the perspective of the Movement in my memoir.
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