Remarking today's news item from the North Carolina NAACP about their planned march on the General Assembly next month, Mark Kleinschmidt notes that the organization's head, the Rev. William Barber, was recently named (along with Tom Jensen) one of the "seven who will matter in 2007." This is a man who is already making a tremendous difference.
I first experienced the power of Rev. Barber's presence two years ago, on Martin Luther King Day in Chapel Hill, 2005. We had just emerged from the throes of renaming Airport Road for King--a subject the preacher did not shy away from. Warming to the metaphor of the road, he urged us all to keep traveling in the ways of social justice. I've been watching, and occasionally (not often enough) working with, this gifted leader ever since.