Hall Of Fame: Lasting Influence

Additions to Georgia Trend’s Most Influential Georgians Hall of Fame

Rev. Dr. Joseph Lowery


Minister, Civil Rights leader


Atlanta


Age: 88

Joseph Lowery remains influential and relevant as he approaches 90, a venerable lion of the good fight.

The NAACP called Lowery the “dean of the Civil Rights movement.” A direct link to the roots of the movement, Lowery possesses “the consummate voice of biblical and social relevancy, a focused prophetic voice, speaking truth to power,” according to Ebony magazine.

Lowery shared his truth to a global audience last year when he delivered the benediction at Barack Obama’s historic presidential inauguration. Then, in August, he received the nation’s highest civilian honor when President Obama awarded him the Presidential Medal of Freedom in recognition of a lifetime spent in nonviolent struggle for civil rights, peace and human dignity.

Lowery entered the fray early on, helping to lead the Montgomery bus boycott following Rosa Parks’ arrest in 1955, and heading up the Alabama Civic Affairs Association – a group focused on desegregating buses and public places. In 1957, he founded the Southern Christian Leadership Confer-ence (SCLC) with his friend and colleague, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., serving as president and CEO of the organization from 1977 to 1998.

He delivered the demands of the Selma-to-Montgomery March to Ala-bama Gov. George Wallace in 1965. The marchers were beaten by Wallace’s segregationists as the world watched. Thirty years later, during a re-enactment of the march, Wallace publicly welcomed Lowery and personally apologized for his actions.

As part of his 80th birthday celebration in 2001, Clark-Atlanta University established the Joseph E. Lowery Insti-tute for Justice and Human Rights, and Lowery still is in demand nationally as a speaker. – Jerry Grillo



Bill Shipp


Journalist


Acworth


Age: 76

When Bill Shipp launched his newsletter – Bill Shipp’s Georgia – on the Internet in 1994, he made the transition from traditional ink-stained wretch to new-age journalist. It was the beginning of the electronic age in written news, and Shipp was at the forefront with the first significant online political journal.

And when he quit writing his column last spring, it was the end of an era in journalism that he shaped and defined over half a century.

“Bill Shipp had a profound effect on journalism in our state,” Johnny Isak-son told his fellow U.S. senators following Shipp’s retirement.

For more than 50 years, Shipp covered politics in Georgia, his pen always capturing the pulse of the state. He worked for more than 30 years as a reporter and editor at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, then as an entrepreneurial journalist producing his own newsletter and syndicated columnist, and for a time, as an editor/columnist at this magazine.

As a reporter he covered some of the major events of the late 20th century, such as the Civil Rights movement, the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr. and the transition of the segregated old South into a new, commercially-vibrant South. He was a familiar face on Atlanta television. But he became best known as a clear-eyed political pundit who wrote the most influential column in the state.

“When he wrote a column, you went to the paper and you read Bill Shipp first,” Isakson said on the floor of the U.S. Senate. “If you were going to be the victim of the day, you might as well go out and find out what he was going to say about you. But if you were not the victim of the day, you could relish in seeing some other politician being skewered by that pen.” – Jerry Grillo



2009

Spurgeon Richardson


Former President/CEO


Atlanta Convention & Visitors Bureau



2008

Hank Aaron


Baseball Legend,


Founder/Owner


755 Restaurant Corp.



Mack Mattingly


Former U.S. Senator;


Former Assistant Secretary General (NATO);


Former U.S. Ambassador


(Seychelles)



Carl Patton


Former President


Georgia State University



Herman J. Russell


Chairman/Founder


H.J. Russell & Company



2007

A.D. “Pete” Correll


Former Chairman/CEO


Georgia-Pacific Corp.



Bernie Marcus


Philanthropist



William S. Morris III


Chairman/CEO


Morris Communications Co.



2006

James Blanchard


Retired Board Chairman


Synovus Financial Corp.



Zell Miller


Senior Policy Advisor


McKenna Long & Aldridge LLP;


Former Governor,


U.S. Senator



Betty Siegel


Former President


Kennesaw State University



2005

Tom Cousins


Former Board Chairman


Cousins Properties Inc.



Vince Dooley


Athletic Director Emeritus


University of Georgia



2004

Tommy Irvin


Georgia Commissioner of Agriculture



Manuel Maloof


(1924-2004)


Longtime DeKalb County CEO and Commissioner



Sam Massell


President


Buckhead Coalition; Former Mayor, City of Atlanta



J. Mack Robinson


Businessman and Philanthropist



Ted Turner


Founder, CNN, TNT and TBS;


Environmentalist and Philanthropist



2003

Jimmy Carter


Nobel Peace Prize winner; Former President



Rosalynn Carter


Former First Lady; Mental Health Advocate



Dr. Louis Sullivan


Founding Dean, Morehouse


School of Medicine; Former U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services



Sam Nunn


Former U.S. Senator; National Defense Authority



Griffin Bell


(1918-2009)


Former U.S. Attorney General;


Former U.S. Circuit Court Judge



S. Truett Cathy


Founder, Chick-fil-A; Philanthropist



Andrew Young


Former Mayor, City of Atlanta;


Former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations;


Civic Leader



Carl Sanders


Former Governor; Attorney



John C. Portman


Architect,


Developer and Entrepreneur



Thomas B. Murphy


(1924-2007)


Longtime Speaker,


Georgia House of Representatives

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