Voting Rights Act 50th anniversary celebrated


– Photos by John Meiu

On Thursday, August 13, in the Oakland County Board of Commissioners’ Auditorium in Pontiac, members of the Oakland County Board of Commissioners celebrated the landmark Voting Rights Act Legislation signed on August 6, 1965, by President Lyndon B. Johnson.
Among those participating in the event were (photo #1, left to right) Oakland County 50th District Court Chief Judge Cynthia Walker, and Commissioners Janet Jackson, Nancy Quarles, and David Bowman. “I remember Dr. King and the marches that led up to the signing of this act by President Johnson. I remember the many brave men and women, young and old who strived to ensure that black Americans had the right to vote. I want to make certain that we never forget,” stated Quarles. “I am a direct beneficiary of the Voting Rights Act by having the opportunity to be elected to office which would not have been possible for me and so many others.  I shudder to think what my life would be like, if this act did not exist. It helped to create a path for my American Dream.”

Photo #2: Numerous Oakland County elected officials attended the  special presentation during the board’s meeting highlighting the Voting Rights Act’s 50th Anniversary.  Also noted during the meeting was the fact that 2015 marks significant milestones in history including the 150th anniversary of Juneteenth and the 50th anniversary of the Selma-to-Montgomery march for black American voting rights.