Ivan Allen

Ivan Allen is one of the most important figures in Atlanta’s history, and never before have the stories contained in his legacy been told on the silver screen. The story of Ivan Allen’s life and career is one of transformation. A child of the new Southern gentry, he inherited his father’s business fortune and political aspirations. He ran unsuccessfully for governor of Georgia on a segregationist ticket in the 50s. Later that decade, as the head of the Atlanta Chamber of Commerce, he found himself up against a strong anti-segregation protest movement, emanating from the Atlanta University Center of historically black colleges. After defeating avowed, sometimes violent segregationist, Lester Maddox, in the 1961 mayoral election, Ivan Allen led the desegregation of city government buildings. In his two terms as mayor, Atlanta became the headquarters of the Civil Rights Movement, and the city grew as much as all the previous years since its founding. The mayor’s often rocky journey through the tumult of the 60s offers a fresh perspective on today’s climate of division and polarization. By opening himself up to the diversity of voices around him, Ivan Allen managed to bring together a divided city, and pave the way for Atlanta to become a hub in the world economy. His legacy is not that of a hero, but rather that of a flawed person who was willing to lead by compromise. These stories are vital to share with today’s Atlantans, many of whom know little of its history.

1 Comment

  • Bett Addams Williams on September 13, 2016

    Wonderful capsulation of Ivan Allen’s leadership by compromise.

    Have you read Peachtree Meets Sweet Auburn? ( I’m not familiar with Ivan Allen’s life on the silver screen other than newsreels ) There is a episode in P’tree Meets S Auburn at a Community Chest kick-off that should be in the silver screen version if it is still in the works

    I’ve just seen your upbeat video for Legal Aid Society. Question- is it as new as the link I see says it is? August 26,2016?

    If possible, I’d like to know how recent it is before I share it with Facebook friends

    Another question: why is this type gray instead of black and so small (I’m giving away my age or at least the age of my eyes 😉

    What a great company you are!!!!

    Have you read Just Mercy by Bryan Stephenson? He could use your help with a colossal project he is working on.

    Bett Williams
    102 Paces Run
    Atlanta GA 30339
    404-309-4876 text or talk

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