W&L Celebrates Martin Luther King Jr.’s Legacy A variety of events and lectures are planned for this year’s observance of MLK day.
Washington and Lee University will celebrate the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.’s life and legacy with a week of lectures and events beginning Jan. 15. All events are free and open to the public.
The week will kick off with a keynote address by Ben Crump, one of the nation’s foremost lawyers and advocates for social justice, on Jan. 15 at 6 p.m. in Wilson Concert Hall.
Crump is the founder and principal owner of Ben Crump Law. He has represented families in multiple high-profile civil rights cases, including Trayvon Martin, Michael Brown and Stephon Clark as well as the residents of Flint, Michigan, who were impacted by the Flint water crisis. Crump also represented nine of the 13 Black women who were victims in the Holtzclaw Oklahoma City Police rape case in 2015 and worked on the precedent-setting U.S. Supreme Court case involving excessive police force against Robbie Tolan in 2008.
In addition to his multiple professional accomplishments, Crump has also been recognized with the NAACP Thurgood Marshall Award, the SCLC Martin Luther King Servant Leader Award, the American Association for Justice Johnnie Cochran Award and the Alpha Kappa Alpha Eleanor Roosevelt Medallion for Service.
Crump’s talk is free and open to the public, but registration is required.
Access the registration and read more about Crump online at go.wlu.edu/crump. The lecture will also be available to watch live via Zoom at go.wlu.edu/mlkzoom.
The W&L Tea Society will host its annual Martin Luther King Day tea ceremony on Jan. 16. The society will serve sweets and matcha tea in the W&L Tea Room to honor King and his legacy. There will be three seating times at 1, 1:45 and 2:30 p.m. Registration is required and attendance is limited to 20 people per seating. Reserve your seat online at calendly.com/mwlu/tea_mlk23?month.
Other happenings include a children’s event celebrating King’s birthday on Jan. 16. Interested participants are encouraged to stop by Evans Dining Hall for games, face painting, and arts and crafts from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Additionally, event participants can make doggy treats to donate to the SPCA. Cake, snacks and punch will be provided.
The public is also invited to the annual MLK Reflections Dinner on Jan. 18 at 6 p.m. in Evans Dining Hall. The event allows community members to reflect on the lessons of King’s life and work. Each year, leaders from the campus and the Lexington communities are invited to offer a brief commentary on their view of King’s legacy and what it has meant to the world. Registration is required and can be accessed online at go.wlu.edu/mlkreflections.
The annual MLK Shabbat will take place on Jan. 20 at 6 p.m. W&L Hillel and the Class of 1994 Office of Inclusion and Engagement invite all members of the W&L and Lexington communities to join them in the Hillel sanctuary for a Shabbat dinner and service honoring the life and legacy of King. Seating is limited, so please register in advance at go.wlu.edu/ShabbatMLK.
Check back for more information about upcoming events hosted by student organizations at go.wlu.edu/MLK.
The week’s events are sponsored by The Class of 1994, Office of Inclusion and Engagement, Office of the Provost, The Institute for Honor, Washington and Lee University School of Law, Student Activities, the History Department, and Virginia Military Institute’s Office of Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion.