"I felt a magnetic pull toward Fannie Lou Hamer the first time I heard her speak in Tuskegee, Alabama in August, 1969 on the day of hurricane Camille. Afterwards, I asked her why did she choose to do this work. She responded, 'Baby, I didn't choose; I was chosen.' That was about as close as anyone had drawn me to God in a personal way up until then - and what she had to say tugged at my heartstrings. I went on to college and law school, moved to Mississippi afterwards, and picked up with Mrs. Hamer where I had left off that day in Alabama - through those who remembered her best - women in the Southern Rural Women's Network. My modest goal when I decided to do the show in 1983 was to make sure Mississippi women knew about Mrs. Hamer. Almost 20 years and over 600 performances later, women on four continents have seen the show. After seeing the effect her story has on people, my goal now is to take her message of love and healing to the whole world...And, oh yes, John O'Neal, we were right, 'Integrity conquers death.'" -Billie Jean Young Alabama native billie jean Young is the creator - researcher, writer, and performer - of Fannie Lou Hamer: This Little Light..."
Fannie Lou Hamer "Mrs. Hamer was grassroots, a strong, dignified, majestic woman from the mississippi Delta. Watching Billie Jean Young capture her in "Fannie Lou Hamer: This LIttle Light... is like being transported back to the sixties when Mrs. Hamer lived and walked among us..." -Unita Blackwell
In twenty years, Young has received several awards since creating Frannie Lou Hamer: This Little Light.... These awards include: The Macarthur Fellows Award; Mississippi Governor's Award for Artistic Achievement; Lucy Terry Prince Unsung Heroine Award, and Essence Magazine's Salute to the Decade's Women of Achievement Award. Young prays during a performance in Albany, Georgia
Who is Fannie Lou Hamer?

Images and text provided by Billie Jean Young. Layout design by Melissa L. Reh

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