The Martin Luther King Jr. holiday celebrates the civil rights leader’s life and legacy. MLK Day marks an opportunity to recommit as citizens by volunteering in service to others, to underpin racial equity, and foster respect for individual differences. The Perspectives’ DEI Committee spent time reflecting on what this day and the leader, Martin Luther King Jr., mean to us. Here are some of our stories and resources.
Sunette Thompson, Account Manager
As I walked through the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport last week heading home from visiting family for the holiday, I noticed a small crowd of people gathered around a small display. Curious, I approached the crowd to see what they were looking at, and to my surprise, it was an exhibit of Dr. Martin Luther. As I visited each section of the exhibit, I literally became overwhelmed with gratitude for all the work and sacrifices made by him and so many others who paved the way for me to live the life that I live today. Though the exhibit was small, it was mighty. I believe it was because of the tremendous love, hope and dream of Dr. King that myself and so many of us continue to live our lives knowing and believing that dreams actually do come true.
Check out some of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr’s quotes that continue to inspire me to keep hope and dreams alive.
I believe it was because of the tremendous love, hope and dream of Dr. King that myself and so many of us continue to live our lives knowing and believing that dreams actually do come true.
Bernie Dyme, President
As I thought about MLK Day, I remembered where I was on the day Dr. King was assassinated. I was 14 years old and was aware of the racial divisions that existed in our country. This speech given by then-Senator Robert F. Kennedy who had just begun his run for President after Lyndon Johnson said he would not run for another term, was impromptu and took courage in that era to give. In fact, there is a link to the actual speech which took about 5 minutes and is worth watching. It certainly has to be taken in the context of the times but there is a lot in it that is prescient.
Marie Pavlich, Director of Strategy
I often think about how to integrate stories of great leaders and promote racial equity with my child. One small way I do this is by finding stories that center leaders like Martin Luther King Jr. In anticipation of MLK Day next Monday I visited my favorite resource for diverse books @hereweeread on Instagram. She had an amazing list of books to read to kids for MLK Day, that included recommendations for every age. We will be picking some up at our local library.
MLK Day is designated as a national day of service. Encouraging Americans to volunteer, in whatever capacity they can, to improve their communities. If you are interested in finding a volunteer opportunity to honor MLK this month here is a great resource to search for in-person and virtual volunteer opportunities.
We would love to hear from others in our community about their own stories or resources that connect with them when thinking about Martin Luther King Jr., serving the community, racial equity, and respecting individual differences. Leave your comment below.