The Veterans of the Mississippi Civil Rights Movement have announced three notable key note speakers for their sixth annual conference: Minister Louis Farrakhan, former U.S. Department of Agriculture staffer Shirley Sherrod and former NAACP chairwoman Myrlie Evers Williams.

“We are trying to be true to our reason for being,” Owen Brooks, executive director of the group, said in a statement. “This conference, like others, will allow an exchange of ideas and to engage participants in discussions regarding issues that are important to them.” 

Other confirmed special guests include D.C. councilman Marion Barry, Yale professor and former Black Panther Kathleen Cleaver, author and poet Haki Madhubuti, and community activist Karima Al-Amin.

The event will be hosted on the campus of Jackson State University in Jackson, Miss. from March 23 to March 26. Intended to inspire youth into social activism, this year’s conference will address controversial issues including the threat to free speech, the cradle–to-prison pipeline and “Islamophobia” and other religious intolerance.

The self-described largest annual gathering of civil rights figures expects to join hundreds of historians, educators, grassroots organization leaders and students, according to a press release.

Admission begins at $100 and includes a one-year membership to the Veterans of the Mississippi Civil Rights Movement. Various student discounts are available.

To register or learn more, visit