LOUISVILLE, Ky (WDRB) – Following the death of June of Pride Inc. founder and activist George Burney, the search was on to find a home to showcase all that Burney brought to the Louisville Community.

Saturday, renovation began on what will soon be a museum dedicated to the civil rights activist.

Dozens of city leaders, community activists, and law enforcement officials gathered at 2615 Magazine Street in Louisville’s Russell Neighborhood for the dedication.

Among those in attendance was Burney’s widow Barbra. 

“George Burney wanted nothing for himself. He was all about people and helping people,” Barbra Burney told WDRB news.

The group Jesus and a Job helped spearhead the project to renovate an abandoned home on Magazine street – the same street where Burney used to live. The group gives second chances to men who have been in prison and are now looking to turn their lives around.

Organizers said the front part of the home will be a museum that will display Burney’s accolades and photos of his life, while the back half will be where a tenant will live.

“Putting guys to work, they are re-entering back into the community so they got some money so they can stay on the straight and narrow so doing this to honor George Burney who is one of our great civil rights leaders is a tremendous combo,” Louisville Mayor Greg Fisher said.

LMPD Chief Steve Conrad was also in attendance and mentioned how events like the dedication strengthen a community and help break down barriers that can lead to increased crime.

“This is about making Louisville safer and I thank you so much for your leadership and what you are doing for this community,” Conrad said.

Those with Jesus and Job said there are more than 5,000 abandoned homes in the greater metro Louisville area, so they will have no shortage of future projects to work on.

Mayor Fisher said it’s about paying it forward to others so they can not only benefit from those who helped pave a way, but also learn from them.

“As we lose more and more of our civil rights leaders it’s important we keep their history and their legacy alive so people understand the struggle that went into equal rights for all,” Fisher said.

Jesus and a Job needs to raise about $50,000 so the project can be completed. They have not yet set a completion deadline. 

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