Avila University honors sisters for Selma marches

Avila Univeristy Honors Selma Marchers

Avila President Ron Slepitza honors Sisters Barbara Moore, Rosemary Flanigan and Roberta Schmidt with an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters at the commencement on May 9.

Avila University's graduation ceremony on May 9 commemorated the 424 Avila University graduates as well as three Avila alumnae and sisters that participated in one of the most iconic movements in this nation’s history.

In March 1965, three marches from Selma to Montgomery marked iconic protests in the Voting Rights Act of the American Civil Rights Movement. Three Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet and Avila alumnae, Sisters Roberta Schmidt (’49),  Rosemary Flanigan (’47) and Barbara Moore (’62), joined hundreds of marchers after a direct appeal to clergy from Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

“Our role was one of witness,” said Sister Roberta Schmidt. “I was so pleased that they decided to include six women as part of that group.”

Avila was proud to honor our fellow alumnae with the Honorary Doctorates of Human Letters for their contributions at Selma and to the global community.

“We are honoring the courage and commitment to social justice by the sisters and everyone involved with the Selma march 50 years ago,” Avila President Ron Slepitza commented. “We want our graduates to think of this when they must find the courage and commitment to a cause in their lives.”

Read more about the sisters and Selma's 50th commemoration.

Read "The Selma Effect" by Carol Coburn, professor of religious studies at Avila.


Avila Media Contact: Haley Jean Jones

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