Ben Z. Rose, the author of the book "Mother of Freedom: Mum Bett and the Roots of Abolitionism" will be the first speaker in the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at Berkshire Community College's annual Distinguished Speakers Series.

Rose will be speaking at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, May 7, in the K-111 lecture hall, Koussevitsky Arts Center, at BCC, 1350 West St.

Rose will discuss the life of the Berkshires' Mum Bett, who later changed her name to Elizabeth Freeman, the first black enslaved person to gain her freedom in a court of law based on the principle of general equality.

Admission is $10 for OLLI members and $15 for non-members, and tickets are available at the door or by calling 413-236-2190 to reserve.

Admission is free to BCC staff and students and youth 17 and under. Forum credit is available for BCC students.

For more information about OLLI's programs, visit, call 413-236-2190 or email