TV Judge Mathis to Highlight Black History Month Events

Published: Jan 19, 2005
Judge Greg Mathis will kick off Black History Month at UT with a motivational speech at the Falk Theater on Tuesday, Feb. 1, at 8 p.m.

Star of the popular syndicated television program by the same name, Judge Mathis is a former Detroit gang member inspired by a caring judge, who ordered the teenage dropout Mathis to earn his GED or go to jail. Once headed in a positive direction, Mathis promised his dying mother he would change his ways. He earned a law degree, became a committed activist, and became the youngest judge in Michigan history when he was elected to the state’s 36th district court in 1995.

After just two years on the bench, he was offered his own show settling disputes as a TV judge. He accepted, even though it meant resigning his position as a “real” judge, because he knew that he could bring his message to more people on television than he could in the courtroom.

"Yeah, some folks thought it was bizarre that I would leave my hard-won judgeship for television success," said Mathis, whose show premiered in 1997. "But it's for a bigger goal, and that is to inspire millions."

Admission to Mathis’ Falk Theater appearance is $10 general and free for students with UT ID.

The event is sponsored by the Tau Pi chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc., Student Government and the Diversity Fellowship.

Highlights of other Black History Month events at the University:

UT Jazz Ensemble and Singer Kathy Kosins, Feb. 2, 7:30 p.m., Falk Theater
The enchanting rhythm of jazz as performed by UT’s jazz ensemble, featuring jazz singer Kathy Kosins. General admission is $7, free with UT ID.

Spring Dance Concert, Feb. 17-19, 8 p.m., Falk Theater
The UT dance program will feature the talents of a creative, skillful, multi-cultural community of dancers and choreographers. Admission is free.

Roots, Roots, and More Roots, Feb. 23, 8 p.m., Plant Hall Fletcher Lounge
A showcase of student talent. Admission is free.

For more information, please contact Stephanie Russell Holz at srholz@ut.edu or (813) 253-6233.