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Roland S. Martin Keynotes W&L's MLK Jr. Celebration

Roland S. Martin, an award-winning journalist, author and political analyst, will present the keynote address for the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration at Washington and Lee University on Monday, Jan. 16, at 7 p.m. in Lee Chapel.

A reception will follow in Evans Dining Hall. Martin’s address, which is free and open to the public, is one of a variety of events during the week-long celebration honoring the life and legacy of Dr. King.

Martin, a nationally syndicated columnist with Creators Syndicate, is a CNN analyst who appears frequently on a number of the network’s programs and was part of the CNN team that won a Peabody Award for its 2008 election coverage. He is also a commentator for TV One Cable Network and host of “Washington Watch with Roland Martin,” a one-hour Sunday morning news show.

During the 1990s, Martin was a contributor on the BET Sunday morning news program “Lead Story” and is the former executive editor of the Chicago Defender.

He is a 1991 graduate of Texas A&M University, where he earned a bachelor’s of science degree in journalism.

Other events during the MLK Celebration include:

MLK Day of Service, Saturday, Jan. 14

Washington and Lee’s Shepherd Poverty Program will host a Day of Service on Saturday, Jan. 14, from 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. The day will begin in Stackhouse Theatre with presentations from community leaders about the importance of service and the impact students can have on the local community. Following lunch, students will spend the afternoon completing needed service projects at a variety of community agencies. (For students who are unable to participate on Saturday, other service opportunities will be available on Monday.)

Sunday Supper (RSVP required), Sunday, Jan. 15, 7 p.m.

In the spirit of promoting peace, inspiring community service and upholding Dr.  King’s legacy, the Beta Chi Omega and Tau Zeta Chapters of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, in conjunction with W&L’s MLK Celebration Planning Committee, will host a Sunday Supper patterned after the suppers that Dr. King hosted during the height of the Civil Rights Movement. The event will be held in Evans Dining Hall and will serve as a forum for leaders from both the Washington and Lee and Lexington communities to reflect on what Dr. King means to them. RSVPs for this event should go to Tammy Futrell, associate dean of students at tfutrell@wlu.edu.

Birthday Party, Monday, Jan. 16, 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.

A birthday party for the children of Rockbridge County will be held in the Elrod Commons Living Room. There will be games, fun and food. All children must be accompanied by an adult.

A Celebration of Soul, Wednesday, Jan. 18, 8 p.m.

During the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s, soul music, a relatively new genre with its roots in gospel and rhythm and blues, became a symbol of African-American pride as well as protest. Artists like Sam Cooke, Nina Simone, James Brown, Marvin Gaye and many more, provided the soundtrack for the lives of people that struggled for equality and human rights.

To celebrate that music, A Celebration of Soul will be held in the Commons Marketplace, featuring a diverse array of performances, including music, dance and spoken word.

Remembrance Concert, Saturday, Jan. 21, 8 p.m.

The Department of Music and the Office of Diversity and Inclusion will host a Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Remembrance Concert on Saturday, Jan. 21, at 8p.m. at the First Baptist Church in Lexington.

All events are free and open to the public.

News Contact:
Julie Cline
News Writer