Hickory – Catawba Valley Community College’s Interdisciplinary Read Committee will hold the “Just Mercy” capstone event by hosting keynote speaker Anthony Ray Hinton on Tues., March 20.

Hinton was on Alabama’s death row when Bryan Stevenson’s book “Just Mercy” was first published. His experience of being exonerated for crimes he did not commit is nearly identical to those of the individuals about whom Stevenson writes.

Hinton will appear Tues., March 20, at 11 a.m., in the Tarlton Complex located on the main campus in Hickory. He will also appear at the 1924 Courthouse in Newton at 6 p.m. Both appearances are free and open to the public.

Stevenson and attorneys at the Equal Justice Initiative worked tirelessly to free Hinton after spending 30 years on Alabama’s death row. Hinton is the 152nd person exonerated from death row in the United States since 1973 and the sixth in the state of Alabama. Hinton will speak about his experiences during his incarceration and how he is adjusting to life outside prison walls.

During the college’s year-long examination of “Just Mercy,” students from various core disciplines were challenged to consider themselves as part of a larger community and society. The experience highlights diversity through critical thinking, study and research. The college also partnered with the Catawba County Library to provide programming that has focused on the criminal justice system.

The project is supported by a grant from the United Arts Council of Catawba County, the CVCC Quality Enhancement Plan, and generous donations by sponsors and attorneys at law Joel C. Harbinson, Robert E. Campbell, and Kimberly S. Taylor.

Individuals with a disability needing accommodations should contact CVCC’s Counselor for Students with Disabilities at least 72 hours in advance to allow time to arrange the services at 828-327-7000, ext. 4222, or accommodations@cvcc.edu.

Ray Hinton