Special to the
Opelika Observer

Ashley Brown and Olivia Nichols, co-founders of the Lee County Remembrance Project, will present “Confronting Racial Terror in Lee County: A Community Remembrance Project” at OLLI’s Alabama Brown Bag Lunch & Lecture Series. Their presentation will be at the Boykin Community Center on March 4.
The project is a community initiative working to reconcile the racial terror, violence and trauma that occurred in Lee County. Using the Equal Justice Initiative’s truth and reconciliation model, the project addresses the urgent need to discuss the lynchings and racial terror that occurred in Lee County and to engage in reconciliation practices to overcome Lee County’s persistent legacy of violence and terrorism.
As of March 2020, the project research team has compiled more than 500 newspaper reports, legal documents and various records of four lynchings in Lee County between 1877 and 1950, and numerous “legal executions” that occurred during the same time frame. The project’s goals include (1) installing historical markers and memorials to honor and remember the victims of racial terror, (2) providing educational materials and opportunities for community members to learn about the legacy of racial terror, and (3) advocating for racial justice and equity.
Brown, a Montgomery native, attended Auburn University, earning a bachelor of arts degree in psychology, with a minor in human development of family studies and a master’s degree in education with a concentration in clinical mental health counseling. She is a nationally certified counselor, and she is currently a doctoral student in Auburn’s Counselor Education Program.
Nichols, a Wisconsin native, is a doctoral student in Human Development and
Family Studies at Auburn University. She received her master’s degree from Auburn with a focus on early childhood development and her bachelor’s degree in psychology and at-risk child youth care from the University of Wisconsin – La Crosse. In her current role, she is the lab manager for the Health Equity Research Lab under Dr. Thomas Fuller-Rowell and examines the developmental origins of health disparities.
The Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at Auburn University (OLLI at Auburn) hosts its Alabama Bicentennial Brown Bag Lunch & Lecture Series from 11:45 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Boykin Community Center, located at 400 Boykin St. in Auburn. The bring-your-own-lunch begins at 11:45 a.m., and complementary coffee, tea and water will be provided. The program begins at 12:15 p.m. The series is cosponsored by the Caroline Marshall Draughon Center for the Arts and Humanities and City of Auburn’s Boykin Community Center. The program is open to the public at no charge.
OLLI at Auburn is a program of the Office of the Vice President for University Outreach at Auburn University. OLLI administrative offices and select classes are located at the historic Sunny Slope property, 1031 S. College St. in Auburn.
For more information regarding this event or to learn about becoming a volunteer faculty member, volunteer service assistant or sponsor, contact Shawnee McKee, OLLI Administrative Support, at 334-844-3146, olli@auburn.edu, or by visiting www.olliatauburn.org.