ACU Reschedules Black History Month Program
Abilene Christian University
Dr. Billy Curl will speak April 28 about his experience as one of the first two Black undergraduate students to integrate Abilene Christian University. The event, sponsored by ACU’s Office of Multicultural Affairs, was originally part of Black History Month in February but had to be rescheduled due to the winter storm that hit Abilene and much of Texas.
“The Power of Story: A Conversation With Dr. Billy Curl” will take place April 28 in Cullen Auditorium from 6:30-8:30 p.m. and will feature interviews with Curl and his great nephew, Rodney Hawkins II, an Emmy-nominated producer for CBS News.
Curl served as a missionary in Ethiopia for six years and has served for more than 40 years as the minister of Crenshaw Church of Christ in Los Angeles. He speaks at Christian conferences, organizations, and educational institutions around the nation. Curl also has served on various boards including on ACU’s Board of Trustees from 2003-18.
The event is free but registration is mandatory and space is limited due to COVID-19 safety
protocols. Face coverings and physical distancing are encouraged. Click this link to register.
OMA director Ryan Bowman will moderate the discussion, beginning with an interview of Curl
about his life story, his ministry and his experience as one of the first two Black undergraduate
students at ACU. Then, Bowman and Hawkins will discuss Hawkins’ ongoing series documenting his family history.
“Some people are chosen to walk a path that has never been beaten,” Bowman said. “If not for
that boldness and courage, the doors would not be opened for others. It’ll be great for students
to see the possibility of being a solution and walking in faith. This journey is predicated upon
how we use the gifts of God in our lives, and this night will be inspirational for everyone.”
A native of Nacogdoches, Texas, Curl attended Southwestern Christian College for two years
before enrolling at Abilene Christian, where he graduated in 1964 with a degree in speech
pathology. During his time in Abilene, he met and married Mary Davis Curl, his wife of more
than 50 years.
Hawkins is an Emmy-nominated journalist for CBS News. His latest news assignments include
his personal journey restoring his family’s 200-year-old cemetery, investigating the murder of
Ahmaud Arbery and reporting on the toll of the coronavirus pandemic. Hawkins was formerly an
associate producer based in New York for “CBS This Morning” and has prior experience as a
digital journalist. He graduated from Howard University with a degree in journalism and a
minor in political science