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Michael Thurmond to Speak at UGA Special Collections Libraries

Dekalb County Georgia

At 2 p.m. on Thursday, February 20, the University of Georgia’s Hargrett Rare Book and Manuscript Library and the Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies will host a talk with Michael Thurmond, Dekalb County CEO and acclaimed Athens historian, about his book, A Story Untold: Black Men and Women in Athens History. 40 years after it was first published, his book was updated and re-released last year.

The first 30 UGA students can receive a free copy of the book if they can show their UGA IDs. Anyone can attend the event for free. A light reception will follow the talk on his book.

As chief executive officer of Dekalb County, Thurmond has “fundamentally transformed the culture and enhanced operations of complex organizations such as Georgia Division of Family and Children Services, the Georgia Department of Labor, and the DeKalb County School District.” He has held this position since January 2017.

His other accomplishments include becoming the first African-American elected to the Georgia General Assembly in 1986 from Clarke County since Reconstruction. He was also appointed by the governor to “lead the state Division of Family and Children Services and directed Georgia's historic transition from welfare to work.” In addition, he served for three terms as Georgia labor commissioner after being elected in 1998.

He is a member of the University of Georgia Libraries’ Board of Visitors. Freedom: Georgia’s Antislavery Heritage, 1733-1865, his most recent book, received the Georgia Historical Society’s Lilla Hawes Award.

Visitors can find the Russell Special Collections Building at 300 S. Hull St. in Athens. They can park in the Hull Street Parking Deck. For more information, contact Kaitlin Dotson at kdotson@uga.edu or 706-542-6367.

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