Monday, February 09, 2015

[291] Actor Hill Harper headlines Black History Month at MTSU with uplifting message

MURFREESBORO — He has played a crime scene investigator and a domestic security agency director, but Hill Harper believes he has an even greater role to play.

Harper, who is best known for his roles in the television series “CSI: NY” and “Covert Affairs,” will the keynote speaker for MTSU’s celebration of Black History Month at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 11, in the Student Union Ballroom. This event is free and open to the public.

A cum laude graduate of Harvard University’s law school, Harper embraced acting as a member of Boston’s Black Folks Theater Company. Upon graduation, he moved to Los Angeles to pursue an acting career.

Harper is the founder of the Manifest Your Destiny Foundation, a nonprofit organization created “to provide underserved youth a path to empowerment and educational excellence through mentoring, academic enrichment programming, college access skills obtainment and the facilitation of psychosocial and physical development strategies,” according to

For six years, the foundation has sponsored the Summer Empowerment Academy, a free week-long mentoring event for eighth-graders entering the ninth grade from economically disadvantaged neighborhoods in Los Angeles.
Harper is the author of several New York Times bestsellers, including “Letters to a Young Brother,” “Letters to a Young Sister,” and “The Conversation: How Black Men and Women Can Build Loving, Trusting Relationships.” For both his writing and his acting, Harper has won seven NAACP Image Awards.

A closed session with Harper for African-American males only is slated for 6 p.m. Harper will sign copies of his books from 6:30 to 6:50 p.m. just prior to the keynote address at 7 p.m.

For more information, contact Jonell Hinsey, director of MTSU’s Intercultural and Diversity Affairs Center and chair of MTSU’s Black History Month Committee, at 615-898-5797 or

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