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1977 Norman Thomas - Eugene V. Debs Dinner

The 1977 Thomas - Debs Dinner was held on Sunday, May 1 at the Midland Hotel in Chicago. It was one of the larger Dinners, honoring Charles Hayes. The table chart indicates there were 46 tables. Hayes, at the time, was the Chicago Chair of the Coalition of Black Trade Unionists and a Vice President of the Amalgamated Meat Cutters, one of the predecessor unions of today's United Food and Commercial Workers. Charles Hayes went on to be elected to Congress from Illinois' 1st Congressional District. It was a special election to fill the seat vacated by Harold Washington after his election as Mayor of Chicago. Ralph Helstein presented the award. The featured speaker was economist and author Robert Lekachman, who spoke on the theme of "Challenging the New Conservatives: the Crisis of Liberalism". Liz McPike chaired the event. Jim Gorman and friends performed songs by Woody Guthrie. The photos were by Syd Harris but, unfortunately, we only have contact sheets to work from..



Carl Shier

Ralph Helstein

Carl Shier greets the attendees.


Ralph Helstein presents the award to Charles Hayes.


Charles Hayes

Charles Hayes

Charles Hayes accepts the award from Ralph Helstein.


Charles Hayes responding to the award.


Speakers

Jim Gorman

Two consecutive photos of the speakers' table. From left to right, Carl Shier, Robert Lekachman, Liz McPike, Charles Hayes (speaking), Ralph Helstein, and Mrs. Hayes.


Jim Gorman and friends perform Woody Guthrie.


Robert Lekachman

Robert Lekachman

Robert Lekachman addresses the Dinner.


Grip n Grin

"Grip n Grin" shot of (left to right) Ralph Helstein, Charles Hayes, Robert Lekachman.


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