Reverend Jesse Jackson
Born in South Carolina in 1941, Baptist minister Reverend Jesse Jackson is one of America’s most influential civil rights leaders. After rejecting an athletic scholarship because of the preferential treatment of whites, he joined Martin Luther King Jr.’s Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) as an undergraduate.
In 1967, he was named head of SCLC’s Operation Breadbasket. Jackson was present when King was assassinated in 1968. In later years he founded Operation PUSH (People United to Save Humanity) and the Rainbow Coalition. Jackson campaigned for president in 1984 and 1988, and has mediated international disputes throughout his career.