“Economic injustice is the Civil Rights of today

-  Dr. Juan Gray

Jacksonville SCLC Board Members

SCLC`s founding goals are: Racial Injustice, Economic Injustice and Non Violence.  Reconciliation is our guiding principle based on frank, open and honest communications.

Dr. Juan Gray

Dr. Juan P. Gray has served as Chairman of the Board of the Chapter since 2005 to the present. Dr. Gray has written numerous articles local and national citing the Racial and Economic Injustices which are rampant in Jacksonville, Florida. He is constantly seeking partnership with Businesses and  Local Government to reach Reconciliation that will address and rectify the social ills that afflict our City.

Board Chairman

Bill Bishop

"Vice President Akel, Logan, Shaffer Architects & Planners"

Board Member

J.G Gates

" Entrepreneur and Political Consultant " 

Board Member

Nah'Deh Simmons

" Attorney at Law for the  past 10 years in the State of Florida "

Board Member

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 The southern Christian leadership conference is a civil rights organization found in 1957, as an offshoot of the Montgomery Improvement Association MIA, which successfully staged a 381 day boycott of Montgomery Alabama's segregated bus system. Martin Luther King Jr. and others founded the SCLC in order to have a regional organization that could better coordinate civil rights protest activities across the South. The SCLC was founded in Atlanta Georgia at Ebenezer Baptist Church and advocated confrontation of segregation through civil dissent. This "direct action" included boycotts, marches and other forms of nonviolent protest and was considered controversial by many in the black community, who felt that segregation would be challenged in the courts. The SCLC leadership, most of whom were ministers, also believed that churches should be involved in political activism and held many of their meetings in black churches, which began important symbol in the battle of civil rights. The organization quickly move to the forefront of the Civil Rights Movement.


From the beginning, the SCLC focused is efforts on citizenship schools and efforts to desegregate individual cities such as Albany, Georgia Birmingham, Alabama and St Augustine ,Florida. It played key roles in the March on Washington in 1963 and the Selma Voting Rights Campaign and March to Montgomery in 1965. The SCLC also brought its focus to include issues of economic inequality starting with the Poor People's campaign in 1967.  Martin Luther King, Jr. serve as the organization`s first president from his founding until his assassination in 1968. King was succeeded by Ralph Abernathy who served as president until 1977, and James Lowery who served until 1997. Today, the SCLC is still active as a national and international human rights organization. The SCLC movement is open to all, regardless of race religion, and background.


SCLC National History

     The Jacksonville Chapter of the Southern Christian leadership conference was founded by The Reverend Levi Wilcox in 1964. Most noted among SCLC's earliest membership include, but not limited to Moses Davis, James Edge, Juanita shop, Malachi Beyah, Reverend Charles E Banks, James and Maggie Alford, Edward Exon, Eric Hall, George Gillian, Willie Jones, and Mac Freeman just to name a few. Our chapter is viewed Nationally as the most active chapter in America. The Reverend Jesse Jackson said " Florida is the new Birmingham and Jacksonville was at the Forefront " during the Dream Defenders sit-in protest at the Florida State capital in 2014

The current Civil Rights Actions of Jacksonville Chapter of SCLC include:


  • 2017- joined with the NAACP to protest the City's 2018 MLK Breakfast due to Mayor Lenny Curry`s policy to ignore Racial and Economic Injustice that plague our City.​

  • 2017- Joined Concerned Taxpayers of Duval County to Appeal the vote Yes Referendum to the Florida State Appeal Court.

  • 2016- Challenged Mayor Curry`s Chief of Staff for a $300K contract misappropriations based on a Council Auditing Office Audit.​

  • 2014- Lead demonstrations at the Duval County Courthouse against the State Attorney's Office for the unfair prosecution of Ms. Alexander.

  • 2014- Lead demonstrations with other organizations to it assure the name change of Bedford Forrest High School to Westside High School.

  • 2010- US Representative Brown solicited SCLC to dispatch someone to the Gateways Supervisor of Elections Office to protect the uncounted Mayoral votes to ensure the election of the first Black Mayor of Jacksonville Florida.

  • 2008- Led demonstrations against Duval County`s School to keep Forest Elementary School.​

  • 2007- Lead demonstrations against the supervisor of elections to increase early voting locations.​

  • 2007- LED demonstrations for City to clean up toxic waste sites.​

  • 2007- LED actions to recall Mayor Peyton.​

  • 2006- LED demonstrations against Edward Waters College for poor & deployable graduate rates, exorbitant student failure rates,  protest faculty with bogus terminal degrees and mismanagement of Federal Funds from US Department of Education.

Jacksonville Chapter History

“Our lives begin to end the day we become

silent about things that matter”

-  Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

903 West Union Street, Jacksonville, Fl 32204 

Email: sclcjaxfl@gmail.com   


© 2017 Jacksonville Chapter of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference