John Lewis was SNCC Chair from 1963-1966. He was a Freedom Rider in 1961. A native of Alabama, he spoke at the August 1963 March on Washington. In 1964, John Lewis coordinated SNCC efforts to organize voter registration drives and community action programs during the Mississippi Freedom Summer. The following year, Lewis led over 600 peaceful, orderly protestors across the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama on March 7, 1965. The marchers were attacked by Alabama state troopers in a brutal confrontation that became known as "Bloody Sunday." . After leaving SNCC in 1966, he continued his commitment to the Civil Rights Movement as Associate Director of the Field Foundation and his participation in the Southern Regional Council's voter registration programs. Lewis went on to become the Director of the Voter Education Project (VEP). Under his leadership, the VEP transformed the nation's political climate by adding nearly four million minorities to the voter rolls. In 1977, John Lewis was appointed by President Jimmy Carter to direct more than 250,000 volunteers of ACTION, the federal volunteer agency. In 1981, he was elected to the Atlanta City Council. While serving on the Council, he was an advocate for ethics in government and neighborhood preservation. He was elected to Congress in November 1986 and has served as U.S. Representative of Georgia's Fifth Congressional District since then.
John Lewis authored his biography with writer Michael D'Orso, entitled Walking With The Wind: A Memoir of the Movement (June, 1998).
The March trilogy is a black and white graphic novel trilogy about the U.S. Civil Rights Movement, told through the perspective of civil rights leader and U.S. Congressman John Lewis. The first volume,March: Book One is written by Lewis and Andrew Aydin, illustrated and lettered by Nate Powell and was published in August 2013, and the second volume, March: Book Two was published in January 2015. Book Three is coming soon.
In 2006, two other books were written about John's life: Freedom Riders: John Lewis and Jim Zwerg on the Front Lines of the Civil Rights Movement, by Ann Bausum; and John Lewis in the Lead, by Jim Haskins and Kathleen Benson, with illustrations by famous Georgia artist, Bennie Andrews.