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MLK Events Recap: APB Speakers Keep Martin Luther King Jr.’s Dream Alive

30 Jan 2017

MLK Day Recap Statue

From journalists to authors to lifetime civil rights activists who knew Martin Luther King Jr. personally, APB speakers told audiences why it is important to keep discussing Dr. King’s legacy. In events nationwide, APB speakers shared ways to commemorate Dr. King today, how far the civil rights movement has come, and most importantly, how far it still has to go. These speakers inspired audiences on MLK Day and throughout Black History Month, while empowering them to carry their messages into the future.


Wil Haygood: Celebrating MLK’s Legacy

“People like Martin Luther King, no matter the dark forces he saw coming, believed in the righteous effort to move the country forward. So the forces of goodwill and righteousness must march on.” – Wil Haygood

Read the full Akron Beacon Journal article

‘”Our democracy is only as strong as we want it to be.” – Wil Haygood #capfam #MLKDayOfLearning”

“Great program on MLK Day thank you Mr.Wil Haygood ”

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Cornell William Brooks: Remembering MLK’s Legacy and the Importance of Hope

“May I remind you that hope is not an ethical luxury. It is a moral necessity.” – @CornellWBrooks #USIMLK”

“Thank you for coming to USI, @CornellWBrooks. Thank you for your words of inspiration. May we all strive for unity. #USIMLK @NAACP”

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John Quiñones: Exploring the Possibility of Change

‘”Don’t worry about talking to the movers & shakers, talk to the shaken & the moved” -John Quiñones quoting advice from Peter Jenings #MLKIU”

“@JohnQABC Quinones speaks about how the civil rights movement made his career possible #mlkday”

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Watch John Quinones’ Speech


Amy Goodman and Issa Rae: Tools for Change

“Love how @IssaRae used her experiences of being awkward & insecure for her shows. This is what #AmyGoodman meant by taking back media.”

“Amy Goodman and Issa Rae, MLK keynote at UM. Knowing social movement history to prepare us for work ahead. And failure to succeed.”

Read more testimonials

Watch Amy Goodman and Issa Rae’s Speech


Harry Belafonte: On MLK, Civil Rights, and the Fierce Urgency of Now

“Being able to listen to Harry Belafonte, one of MLK’s confidants and fellow humanitarian, was really amazing.”

“So amazing to hear @harrybelafonte give his keynote address tonight about equality, education, arts, his good friend MLK jr, and much more.”

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Renee Elise Goldsberry: Commemorating MLK

“@reneeelisegolds you were wonderful at northeastern today. Thanks so much for coming to share with us”

“Great interview of @reneeelisegolds with @BellCV on artists’ role in activism for a tribute to #MLKJr”

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“The musical [Hamilton], she said, “dropped into humanity because we needed it.”

Read the full Boston Globe article

Martin Luther King Jr. famously said that “faith is taking the first step even when you don’t see the whole stair­case.”…What followed was generations of artists who “get to play on a stair­case that Dr. King didn’t even necessarily see.”

Read the full Northeastern News article

Watch Renne Elise Goldsberry’s Speech


Kevin Powell:  Discussing MLK’s Fight for Equality and Modern Civil Rights

‘”Privilege means NOTHING unless it’s tied to humanity.” Love that @kevin_powell – on point message tonight! #MLKDAY #grr”

“Activist @kevin_powell gave such an inspiring and hopeful speech and i feel so lucky to have seen it, especially with how bleak times seem”

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Geoffrey Canada: Achieving Equity in Education

“So excited to hear @hczorg’s Geoffrey Canada speak @ACT this morning! He’s a personal hero and amazing innovator for #education. #MLKDay17”

‘”You never know what a kid’s potential is…’ #geoffreycanada #mlkday17 Find what inspires and drives them, guide, and watch them grow.”

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Nikki Giovanni: A View of Diversity

“Hearing Nikki Giovanni speak about Black joy in front of me right now seems so surreal. I’m in awe.”

“So being able to see Nikki Giovanni speak tonight was one of those rare but amazing experiences I’ve had at Georgia Southern.”

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Cornel West: MLK’s Contributions & Legacy

‘”What does it mean to be human?” @CornelWest challenging us all to think about how we can continue to live out the legacy of MLK Jr.”

“@CornelWest your words have propelled me to propel myself. Im so grateful that Ive had the opportunity to see you. Thank you for your work.”

“Having the pleasure to hear Dr. Cornel West speak was easily the most enlightening enriching experience I’ve had all 4 years HANDS DOWN.”

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“He ultimately gave an obligation…to continue MLK’s work. “Everything is at stake,” West said, telling the audience to continue fighting against bigotry and tyranny. “That’s what MLK has always been about.”’

Read the full Underground Voices articles