Congressman John Lewis has proudly served Georgia's 5th congressional district for nearly 20 years.
Born a son of sharecroppers in Troy, Alabama in 1940, John Lewis was influenced as a youngster by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. to become involved in the civil rights movement.
By the age of 23, he was the chairman of the Student Non-violent Co-coordinating Committee (SNCC).
In March of 1965, Lewis, along with Hosea Williams led hundreds of peaceful protesters in what would come to be regarded as one of the seminal moments of the civil rights movement.
While marching across Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama in route to Montgomery to demonstrate the need for voting rights in the state, Lewis and the protesters were brutally attacked by Alabama State Troopers. The senseless brutality of "Bloody Sunday" and the media coverage that followed it helped hasten the passage of the historic Voting Rights Act of 1965.
John McCain has said that "Congressman Lewis is one of the most courageous persons the civil rights movement has ever produced."