Recipients of the: Legacy Award in Music Education

Althea Thompson Thomas

Althea Thomas attended Alabama State University from 1950 to 1959, and then joined the staff at her alma mater, where she taught music from 1959 to 1969. Thomas served as a classroom teacher, teaching courses in music appreciation, band and choral. She has mentored more than forty student teachers during the course of her career.

Althea Thomas pursued a master's degree while devoting with many years of experience in teaching piano, organ, band, choir, art and drama on pre-school on the elementary, secondary and college levels. She is also a veteran musician with many years as organists and choir director.

Thomas has performed at several area churches, including Dexter Avenue King Memorial Baptist, Old Ship AME Zion, Zion AME Zion, Evangel Temple, St. John AME and St. Paul Lutheran which are all in Montgomery, AL.

Althea Thomas provides a host of musical services through the Thompson Legacy studios. This group is active and consist of prolific painters, composers and poets having exhibited locally at Alabama State University's Art Faculty Exhibits, at the Jan Dempsey Gallery in Auburn, at the Guntersville (Alabama) Art Council Gallery and at the Haiti Gallery in Durham, North Carolina.

The Thompson Legacy Studios has been cited for excellent contributions in poetry by the Women's Council of Dexter Avenue King Memorial Baptist Church and has been presented a Proclamation by the Governor of the State of Alabama for ".'..outstanding artistic talents..." and, as a part of the Proceedings and Debates of the 11th Congress of the United States, the Honorable Mike Rogers of the House of Representatives presented a certificate of commendation.

Their musical compositions include thirty-seven choral works, with six performed in concert by the choirs of White Rock Baptist Church of Durham, North Carolina. The performances were seventy-six little pieces in five-finger position, "Songs of Hope," 52 vignettes in five-finger position based on historical facts in John Hope Franklin's From Slavery To Freedom, miscellaneous pieces for piano, twelve chorale preludes on familiar tunes for organ, and eight musical dramas.

Alabama State University

Levi Watkins Library

Upcoming and Recent Programs

The Annual Ralph D. Abernathy Civil Rights Lecture Series


In 1955, Rev. Ralph D. Abernathy helped organize the Montgomery Improvement Association (MIA) and worked with Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. as a key leader of the Montgomery Bus Boycott. Named in memory of the noted ASU graduate and civil rights leader, this annual lecture series honors the legacy of well-known and little-known activists who contributed to the success of the modern civil rights movement.  Sponsored in partnership with the Montgomery Improvement Association (MIA).

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Lift Every Voice:


A newsletter from The National Center for the Study of Civil Rights and African-American Culture at Alabama State University. Fall 2015, Vol. 1, Issue 1.

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The Journey to Freedom: A Mural in Eight Parts


A Visual Interpretation of African-Americans’ Struggle for Recognition as Human Beings and First-Class Citizens

Commissioned by The National Center for the Study of Civil Rights and African-American Culture at Alabama State University

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