Press Release - Detail
For immediate release Thursday, Oct. 13, 2016
CONTACT: Roy L. Williams                                
Director of Public Relations             
Birmingham Public Library                          
Phone: (205) 226-3746 cell (205) 568-0067                        
“Mentoring the A.G. Gaston Way” talk-book signing at the Birmingham Public Library
BIRMINGHAM, Ala.—Former Birmingham City Council President Roderick Royal is continuing his "Mentoring the A.G. Gaston Way” series at the Birmingham Public Library (BPL) with a talk at noon today, Oct. 13, 2016, at the North Birmingham Public Library, 2501 31st St. North.
His discussion focuses on lessons he learned from a friendship with his mentor, the late black millionaire, Dr. A.G. Gaston, that began 40 years ago when Royal was 11 and lasted until Gaston died at age 103 in 1995. It began on Tuesday, Oct. 12 at Smithfield Branch Library. Other dates are as follows:
  • Sunday, Oct. 16, 3 p.m., at Five Points West Regional Library, 4812 Ave. W
  • Wednesday, Oct. 19, 6 p.m., at the Pratt City Branch Library, 509 Dugan Ave.
After each talk, Royal will sign copies of his new book, “A.G. & Me: Intersection Road and Friendship with A.G. Gaston.”  His 70-page book is available for $16.99 at Books-A-Million and online on the store’s website. Royal's book talks about his bond with Gaston, who Black Enterprise magazine named black entrepreneur of the century in the 1990s.  The two first met when Royal was an 11-year-old participant in the former A.G. Gaston Boys Club on Seventh Avenue North.
Read more about Royal’s talk at the following link:
Gaston, who was born on July 4, 1892, is well-known for his phenomenal story of rising from poverty in rural Alabama to building a business empire that included a bank, insurance company, funeral home, business school, hotel, funeral home and other entities. But Royal’s book shows a personal side of the millionaire who was known for his giving spirit (he gave away much of his businesses to employees through establishing an Employee Stock Option Plan).
“Through my book, I show a side of Dr. Gaston that not many people know about,” Royal said. “He was a great influence in my life. My hope is that in this lecture other people can help mentor our youth.”
For additional information about the programs and services of the Birmingham Public Library, visit our website at and be sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter @BPL. The mission of Birmingham Public Library is to provide the highest quality library service to our citizens for life-long learning, cultural enrichment, and enjoyment. This system—with 19 locations and serving the community for 129 years—is one of the largest library systems in the southeast.
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