In 2007, Vanderbilt students, faculty and staff retraced the 1961 Freedom Rides with some of the original Freedom Riders as they traveled to Montgomery and Birmingham, Ala. Among the participants was Congressman John Lewis, Diane Nash, Bernard Lafayette, the Rev. C.T. Vivian, Jim Zwerg, John Seigenthaler and the Rev. James Lawson. More than four decades after being expelled from the university for helping fight segregation in Nashville, Lawson returned to Vanderbilt as a Distinguished University Professor.