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"If not us,
then who?
If not now,
then when?"


When Congressman John Lewis transitioned, an effort to create a tribute to his life and legacy began. A joint task force was formed to help create an inclusive and inspiring tribute in the district he served.

As well as forming a Task Force, the county of Dekalb and the City of Decatur in metro Atlanta Georgia have reserved a space for this tribute in front of the Historic Decatur Courthouse. The Courthouse, which is also a part of the story of civil rights in America, is located in the district Congressman Lewis served for 17 consecutive terms.

A lifetime of service and leadership
is going to be recognized.


“John was a giant of a man, with a humble heart,

he met no strangers and he truly was a man

who loved the people and who loved his

country, which he represented very well.

He deserves this honor.”

~ DeKalb County Commissioner 

Mereda Davis Johnson


John Robert Lewis

(February 21, 1940 – July 17, 2020)

The "Conscience of the Congress" was an American politician, statesman, and civil rights activist and leader who served in the United States House of Representatives for Georgia's 5th congressional district from 1987 until his death in 2020. He was the chairman of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) from 1963 to 1966.

Lewis was one of the "Big Six" leaders of groups who organized the 1963 March on Washington. He fulfilled many key roles in the civil rights movement and its actions to end legalized racial segregation in the United States. In 1965, Lewis led the first of three Selma to Montgomery marches across the Edmund Pettus Bridge. In an incident which became known as Bloody Sunday, state troopers and police attacked the marchers, including Lewis.

A member of the Democratic Party, Lewis was first elected to Congress in 1986 and served 17 terms in the U.S. House of Representatives. The district he represented included most of Atlanta.


Due to his length of service, he became the dean of the Georgia congressional delegation. While in the House, Lewis was one of the leaders of the Democratic Party, serving from 1991 as a Chief Deputy Whip and from 2003 as a Senior Chief Deputy Whip.


John Lewis received many honorary degrees and awards, including the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2011.




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