Martin Luther King, Jr. events announced

Martin Luther King, Jr. Commission announces events celebrating the leader’s legacy

January will be a month where the Martin Luther King, Jr. Commission and the city of Rocky Mount pause to celebrate the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. through community events.

The events begin Saturday, Jan. 12, 2019 with the Martin Luther King, Jr. Commission’s annual Oratorical Competition. Students in grades 6-12 are given the chance to verbally express themselves using Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s philosophy.

The upcoming oratorical competition themes are: “At the Center of it All (Hope, Love, Peace),” (grades 6-8) and “Continuing the Journey,” (grades 9-12).

Three-minute speeches will be performed beginning at 9 a.m. inside the theater at the Imperial Centre for the Arts and Sciences.

Rick Glazier, executive director of the N.C. Justice Center, will serve as the keynote speaker for the 31st annual Unity Breakfast that will be held beginning at 7 a.m. on Jan. 21 at the Dunn Center for the Performing Arts on the campus of N.C. Wesleyan College.

The N.C. Justice Center is the state's leading research and advocacy organization dedicated to transforming North Carolina's prosperity into opportunity for all.

Glazier’s resume is extensive. He previously represented Cumberland County for seven terms in the North Carolina House of Representatives. He also served as a visiting professor in Criminal Justice at Fayetteville State University for eight years and has taught pre-trial civil law at Campbell University’s School of Law for the past 24 years.

The morning will precede “A Day of Service.” In past years, volunteers have served the community via non-profit organizations by cleaning park and public spaces throughout the city, as well as lending aid to senior residents.

“We are always excited about the start of a new year, providing everyone an opportunity to look beyond our differences and focus on the things that unite us as we strive for an inclusive community,” Human Relations Director Archie Jones said.