The Amazing Gus Hawkins


This film features the legislative impact of the Honorable Augustus F. Hawkins, retired congressman from Los Angeles, California.
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Product Description

Film Type: Documentary
Running time: 29 Minutes.
Produced by World Arts Foundation, Inc.
Written and Directed by Michael “Chappie” Grice
Edited by Camara Video Productions

This film features the legislative impact of the Honorable Augustus F. Hawkins, retired congressman from Los Angeles, California. The remarkable attributes of this quiet giant in American legislative history begin with his serving 28 years in the California Assembly before serving another 28 consecutive years in the U.S. House of Representatives. He authored over 100 bills that became law.

The film explores his motives for targeting “education” as a strategy for improving the quality of life for African Americans and other citizens who suffer discrimination. While other members of the Congressional Black Caucus sat on powerful and prestigious committees, Gus Hawkins sat as the lone African American on the education committees and retired in 1992 as Chair of the U. S. House Education & Labor Committee where he had authored the famed and durable “Title I” law. In 1986, he founded the National Council on Educating Black Children.

The rare footage of his conversations with film maker Grice is like sitting at the elder’s feet. Historical narration and tributes from people that know of his contributions punctuate the story. In 2001, the National Park Service dedicated a square mile national park in South Central Los Angeles, in his name. He lives with is wife, Elsie, in Washington, D.C. In 2007, he will be 100 years old. “I’m not counting anymore,” he says with a smile. What a career. What a man!


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