HUNTSVILLE, Ala (WHNT) —  The Village of Promise is having a speaker series featuring former NASA astronaut and NFL player Leland Melvin.

The event is taking place on May 16 at the US Space and Rocket Center in Huntsville. This is the organization’s sixth Speaker Series since 2011 and organizers say it ties directly to the nonprofit’s mission to advance families out of poverty using a multigenerational approach.

“Our Speaker Series events all feature keynote speakers with expertise in education and poverty, and the relationship between the two, with Leland being no exception,” said Village of Promise CEO Dana M. Gillis.

Village of Promise provides educational programs, tools and opportunities for empowerment. Each family the nonprofit works with develops an “Individualized Family Advancement Plan”, which addresses key areas of their lives including education, health, professional development, as well as social and emotional growth.  

The organization addresses the needs of children and families in distressed, underresourced areas. Gillis says the Speaker Series event provides a stage for national thought leaders to share their insight with the Huntsville community on best-practice solutions for addressing generational poverty.

The Speaker Series event will take place from 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. A cocktail reception will begin at 5:30 p.m. Tickets are available for advance purchase only. Tickets can be purchased through the Village of Promise website.