Legend has it that architect Harvey Gantt fell in love with Charlotte, NC the moment he laid eyes on the city he would come to lead. Gantt, a Democrat, served two terms as Charlotte’s first African-American mayor before running for U.S. Senate against Republican Jesse Helms.
His political battles against Helms were fraught with ruthless race-baiting tactics that ultimately earned Helms victory. Gantt was familiar with fighting racism; as a young civil rights activist, he led a sit-in in his hometown of Charleston, SC and sued to become the first black student admitted to Clemson University. Host Frank Stasio talks with Gantt about his life as a civil rights activist, a politician, an architect and a loyal supporter of Charlotte.