MADSA’s membership meeting Sept. 24 was one of our most inspiring. We heard recollections of the Open Door Community (ODC)-led 1990 occupation of the then-abandoned Imperial Hotel, which resulted in the re-opening of the hotel for homeless people and other gains in affordable housing. Historian Charles Steffens called it “one of the most dramatic street actions in Atlanta since the student-led civil rights protests of the 1960s.” The main speaker, Terry Easton, author of Raising Our Voices, Breaking the Chain: The Imperial Hotel Occupation as Prophetic Politics, was joined by ODC founders MADSA member Ed Loring and Murphy Davis, other veterans of the occupation, and ODC board and community members. See the Summer 2016 MADSA newsletter Equality, posted on this website, for an article by Easton. For a copy of his book ($10 donation), contact the ODC.
Following the general discussion, MADSA members present elected officers for 2016-2017: Chair Milt Tambor, Treasurer Travis Reid, Membership Secretary Barbara Segal, Recording Secretary Barbara Joye and members t-large Adam Cardo, Cecily McMillan, and Eric Robertson. Thanks to Nomination Chair Bob Caine and outgoing officers Daniel Hanley and Greg Ames. We continue to explore ways to develop new leadership to help us grow in the years to come.