Activist Fannie Lou Hamer Memorialized In Play At Morehouse

3 minutes ago
William J. Smith / AP Photo

Famous civil rights activist, Fannie Lou Hamer, who co-founded the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party, helped poor, Southern African-Americans register to vote during a time in American history when helping blacks register to vote meant risking your life to do so.

And Hamer almost lost her life because of it, enduring a jail house beating that almost killed her in 1963.

Composer's Work Featured At GSU Greek Symposium Concert

13 minutes ago
Alexandra Gardner /

Christopher Theofanidis is no stranger to Atlanta's classical music scene.

In April, the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and Chorus performed the world premiere of his ambitious composition, “Creation/Creator.”

Last month, a recording of that performance was released on the ASO’s label.

Earlier this week, Theofanidis joined The Westminster Schools Orchestra for a concert at the private school in Buckhead.

Author, Joshilyn Jackson and her book, Someone Else’s Love Story.

Location, location, location!

It turns out that location matters a lot when it comes to writing, just as it does for real estate.

For Decatur author Joshilyn Jackson, location plays a significant role in her writing process, from finding a character's voice to being able to stay focused.

In today's “Writer to Reader” installment for “City Lights,” Jackson explores the places in which she and other writers have found inspiration while working.

Mic Smith / Associated Press

As South Carolina copes with deadly flooding from Hurricane Joaquin, the Georgia Emergency Management Agency is sending help.

About half a dozen GEMA members are already stationed in South Carolina, helping with communications, damage assessment and disaster response.

That number is likely to increase in the next few days or weeks.

“With a flood disaster, we're really in the first phase of the issue,” says GEMA Director Jim Butterworth.

CARE CEO Reveals Vision For International Nonprofit

35 minutes ago
Mary Kate MacIsaac / CARE

The Atlanta-based international humanitarian organization CARE is one of the oldest global aid groups, founded initially in 1945 as a means of providing CARE packages to the victims of World War II in Europe.

At the end of the war, American charities, civic and religious groups, and labor organizations formed what would become the modern-day CARE.

Over the past 70 years, the nonprofit, anti-poverty organization has expanded its operations into 90 countries, providing aid to more than 70 million people.

Actor Bill Cosby addresses a gathering at the 34th Annual Legislative Conference of the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, Wednesday, Sept. 8, 2004, in Washington.
Manuel Balce Ceneta / Associated Press

A judge has refused to dismiss a lawsuit filed by a woman who accuses Bill Cosby of molesting her at the Playboy Mansion in the 1970s when she was 15.

Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Craig Karlan ruled Wednesday that Judy Huth's lawsuit against Cosby should be allowed to proceed over the objections of Cosby's attorneys.

Lawyers for the 78-year-old comedian sought to dismiss Huth's lawsuit because her previous attorney failed to follow rules for how older sex abuse cases should be handled.

Members of Congress are questioning Americans' confidence in the government's dietary guidelines, grilling Obama administration officials on how they are written and whether they are still relevant.

Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell and Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack defended the guidelines before the House Agriculture Committee on Wednesday. They said the latest guidelines haven't even been written yet and are due at the end of the year.

Doug Mills / AP Photo

The first Million Man March on Washington, D.C., in 1995 drew hundreds of thousands of African-American men from across the nation to the National Mall.

It was organized by civil rights activists, including Dr. Benjamin Chavis Jr., the founder of the National African-American Leadership Summit, and Louis Farrakhan and his Nation of Islam organization.

The mission of the march was to draw attention to social and economic issues plaguing African-American communities and a call for unity and political action.

Young Country Crooner Breaks Down Stereotypes

2 hours ago
Jack Dempsey / AP Photo

Country music artist Mickey Guyton is one of the few African-American women writing and singing in the male-dominated genre.

The Texas-born Guyton topped the charts this year with her hit single “Better Than You Left Me.” The popular song landed her on tour with country superstar Brad Paisley and on her way to super stardom herself.

Guyton said during an interview on “Closer Look” that she was first inspired to sing country music when she saw a young LeAnn Rimes singing the national anthem at a Texas ball game.

For the first time, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology will offer course credit for its free online classes.

The university announced Wednesday that students will be able to take a semester of online courses and then earn a "MicroMaster's" degree in the school's supply chain management graduate program. Students who do well during the online semester can apply to finish the one-year program on campus.

Although the courses are free, the university says earning the MicroMaster's degree will carry a modest fee. MIT leaders called it a more affordable route to a degree.

The morning sun illuminates the Capitol in Washington as Congress returns from a district work week, Monday, March 24, 2014.
J. Scott Applewhite / Associated Press

The Senate is poised to vote on a $612 billion defense policy bill that President Barack Obama says he'll veto over a larger dispute about government spending.

Obama doesn't like the way the bill increases defense spending by padding a separate war-fighting account with an extra $38 billion. Also, Congress didn't increase money for domestic agencies, too, as the president wants.

Leo Townsen

 It can be hard work making a start in the art world.

As someone starting out, how do you get to the point where an art gallery will take a second glance at your work … if it’s never been shown in an art gallery?

That’s the question Sara Estes answered in a recent column in Burnaway. And she sat down to tell WABE all about it.

"Hey, Gang! Let's Put On A show!" Tips On Doing It For Yourself

Rapper Sonny Spoon has been named as one of the higher-ups arrested in what authorities say was a large-scale drug organization based in Macon.

U.S. Attorney Michael J. Moore told local media Tuesday that the 45-year-old rapper, whose real name is James E. Maxwell, was among 31 people charged with drug trafficking, gun and money laundering offenses.

Maxwell made a name for himself regionally after recording a song called "Dirty Bird," which saluted the 1998 Atlanta Falcons and their run to the Super Bowl.

USCPublicDiplomacy /


In November, the Marcus Jewish Community Center of Atlanta ─ better known as the MJCCA ─ kicks off its 24th annual book festival.

On Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. at the Atlanta Jewish Academy, the MJCCA offers a prologue to the book festival with a presentation from Michael B. Oren on his new memoir "Ally: My Journey Across the American-Israeli Divide.”

The front entrance of Southern Regional Healthcare Center in Riverdale, Georgia
Brenna Beech / WABE

Grady Memorial Hospital has backed out of a bid for acquiring Southern Regional Medical Center in Clayton County, leaving just one bidder left for the hospital. 

California-based Prime Healthcare Foundation submitted a of letter of interest in purchasing Southern Regional in July, but Grady joined with a last-minute bid on Sept. 25, just weeks before the scheduled auction.


The music world has lost a "Royal" singer ... Billy Joe Royal.

Royal, 73, was born in Valdosta, Georgia, in 1942, and he started singing shortly thereafter.

He got his start performing on the "Georgia Jubilee" radio program, which is where he met fellow singers such as Joe South and Jerry Reed.

Royal's first big hit was "Down in the Boondocks," which made the Top 10.

His other hits include "Burned Like a Rocket," "I Knew You When" and "Tell It Like It Is."

Royal was a 1988 inductee of the Georgia Music Hall of Fame.

Gene J. Puskar / Associated Press

The effort to build a minor league baseball program in Macon moves ahead. On Tuesday, the Macon-Bibb County Commission voted in favor of spending $50,000 on a study to determine if the area could support a baseball team. The research, which should take about two months to complete, will be done by a consulting firm in Washington, D.C. 

Three minor league teams had short stints in the Macon area over the past 13 years.  

Elly Yu / WABE


DeKalb County residents turned out to a town hall meeting in Brookhaven Tuesday night to discuss a recent report into countywide government corruption. 

DeKalb County Commissioner Nancy Jester, hosted the meeting of about 50 residents. She told the residents she recently introduced a measure that could prevent the abuse of county funds. 

"It should never be the case that these expenditures, that were illegal, questionable should have ever gotten out," she said.

Paul Sancya / Associated Press

Friends and family of Julian Bond are remembering him as a man who left a lasting, "invaluable imprint" on not only the civil rights movement but on people around the world.

Bond's admirers gathered at the Lincoln Theater in Washington on Tuesday. He died in August at age 75 and was cremated in a private ceremony.

His wife, Pam Horowitz, told the crowd that she hopes they will honor Bond "by doing the work that consumed his life."

Authorities say a handcuffed man seeking to avoid arrest died after he crashed through the third-floor window glass of a downtown office building and fell 40 feet to the ground.

Spokeswoman Tiffany Russell says the man reported Tuesday to a pretrial services program of Atlanta's Fulton County Superior Court when authorities determined he had a gun. She says he jumped from the window when officers were planning to arrest him. He died later at a hospital.

John Bazemore / Associated Press

A lawyer representing a professional basketball player arrested outside a New York City nightclub has told a jury his client was targeted because he's black.

Attorney Alex Spiro said Tuesday in Manhattan Criminal Court that a white police officer saw a black man in a hoodie when he confronted the Atlanta Hawks' Thabo Sefolosha on April 8.

Sefolosha was arrested while leaving a Manhattan nightclub following a stabbing. He subsequently suffered a season-ending leg fracture after a confrontation with police.

Fernando Filho /

Your daily look at late-breaking news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about Wednesday:

1. Nuclear Smugglers Sought Extremist Buyers

Gangs with suspected Russian ties attempted to shop radioactive material in Moldova to buyers from the Middle East, an AP investigation finds.

2. South Carolina Sees Sun But Weather Woes Not Over

Residents are preparing for a second round of expected flooding as rivers swollen from days of devastating rains make their way toward the Atlantic.

Ludacris performs as part of Final Four Big Dance Concerts at Centennial Olympic Park on Saturday, April 6, 2013, in Atlanta.
Robb D. Cohen/RobbsPhotos/Invision / Associated Press

WABE sent our reporters out to find out one thing: "What defines Atlanta, exactly? Do we have a unique identity?" This is the latest installment in the series. 

Atlanta has been central to hip-hop for years. WABE asked Atlanta’s DJ Drama, Kawan Prather, Bear Sills and DJ Cowboy when they knew Atlanta had made it in the previously New York- and Los Angeles-dominated world of hip-hop.

Atlanta Activist Helps Abuse Victims Become Survivors

Oct 6, 2015
Rich Pedroncelli / AP Photo

The Violence Against Women Act is now 25 years old. It was introduced in Congress in June of 1990 by then U.S. Senator and current Vice President Joe Biden. But it took four years for a divided U.S. Congress to pass the legislation.

Eventually it provided programs and resources for victims of domestic and sexual violence, and sparked an increase in public awareness about the horrors and the family cycle of the violence.

A measure has been introduced to repeal an Atlanta ordinance that news photographers said was being used to stop them from taking photos on public sidewalks.

The City Council on Monday discussed a measure to repeal an ordinance prohibiting photographers from shooting commercial photos outside of businesses without the owner's permission.

Jim Burress / WABE


Atlanta-based Delta Air Lines announced this week that it plans to cut an undisclosed number of management and salaried jobs, despite record profits during the first half of the year.

Delta recorded more than $2 billion in profits during the first six months of 2015, more than double the same period last year, thanks in part to lower fuel costs.

Despite that, revenue was flatter than expected, up just 3 percent through June and only 1 percent in the second quarter.

Ga. Congressman Defends Benghazi Committee’s Legitimacy

Oct 6, 2015
Jim Mone / AP Photo

Former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign got a boost recently from House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, a Republican from California.

McCarthy, who wants to succeed Congressman John Boehner as Speaker of the House when Boehner steps down later this month, talked with Sean Hannity of Fox News last week about GOP successes in the House.

McCarthy pointed to the special committee investigating the killings of four Americans in Benghazi, Libya three years ago, when Hillary Clinton was Secretary of State.

African Children's Choir

The kids of the African Children’s Choir recently danced and sang their way through Atlanta.

The choir was founded 30 years ago in Uganda to help fund children’s education. Now, the program extends to youths in Rwanda, Kenya, South Sudan, South Africa, Nigeria and Ghana, taking them on tour to countries like Canada, Australia, the United Kingdom and the United States.

Courtesy Office of Gov. Nathan Deal

Last week, special investigators released a scathing report on corruption in DeKalb County. In it, investigators Mike Bowers and Richard Hyde called on DeKalb CEO Lee May to resign.

Gov. Nathan Deal appointed May to the position more than two years ago when former CEO Burrell Ellis was indicted on corruption charges. Tuesday, Deal said he doesn’t regret tapping May for the post.

Brenna Beech / WABE

Atlanta City Council has just renewed what's known as the Atlanta Police Department's Recapture Program.

Part of the goal is to save money and fill vacancies by hiring retired officers.

The Atlanta Police Department first began the Recapture Program in 2013 amid concerns it was losing senior talent and had too many new officers. Some of the new officers leave to take jobs at other metro area police departments after they are trained.  

So City Council approved a program to hire retired officers in order to bring back some of that expertise.