President Gilbert invites public to read ‘Just Mercy’ and participate in virtual discussion groups

Marshall University President Jerome A. Gilbert invites the public to join him and the university’s students, faculty and staff in reading and discussing the 2014 New York Times Bestseller "Just Mercy:  A Story of Justice and Redemption."

The book was adapted for a 2019 movie starring Academy Award winner Jamie Foxx and focuses on the true story of the young lawyer who founded the Equal Justice Initiative (EJI) in Montgomery, Ala., and one of his first clients—a Black man who was convicted and sentenced to death for a crime he did not commit.

The book by Bryan Stevenson also chronicles the journey of EJI from its early days with a small staff facing the nation’s highest death sentencing and execution rates, through a successful campaign to challenge the practice of sentencing children to die in prison, to revolutionary projects designed to confront Americans with the country’s history of racial injustice.

Gilbert said, "This book had a profound effect on me when I read it, so when we started planning some activities for Marshall’s new Coalition for Anti-Racism this summer, I decided I wanted to start an informal book club of sorts to discuss this and possibly other, similar books."

Online discussion groups will be set up this fall for people who want to get together to talk about the book. Anyone who would like to receive information as virtual discussions are scheduled should complete the form at to be added to the e-mail list.