2007 Lecture - Taylor Branch

Taylor Branch is the author of the best-selling trilogy America in the King Years, detailing the leadership of Martin Luther King, Jr. in the American Civil Rights movement. The first volume, Parting the Waters: America in the King Years, 1954-63, won the Pulitzer Prize for History, the Book Critics Circle Award, the Los Angeles Times Book Award, the English-Speaking Union Book Award, and was a Finalist for the National Book Award.  Volume two, Pillar of Fire: America in the King Years, 1963-65 won the American Bar Association Silver Gavel Award, the Imus Book Award, and the Sidney Hillman Book Award.  The final volume of the trilogy, At Canaan’s Edge: America in the King Years, 1965-68 was published in 2006 and has been nominated for a variety of awards. 

Branch has also authored The Empire Blues, Second Wind, Blind Ambition, and Blowing the Whistle: Dissent in the Public Interest.  He served in editorial positions for Harper’s and The Washington Monthly and has published widely in news journals and magazines.  A recipient of the National Humanities Medal, Branch received a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a Master of Arts degree in Public Affairs from the Woodrow Wilson School, Princeton University.  He resides with his family in Baltimore, Maryland.