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OHIO Lancaster to honor the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

OHIO Lancaster to honor the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

To honor the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Ohio University Lancaster’s Diversity Committee, OHIO Regional Higher Education and Ohio University’s MLK Jr. Celebration Planning Committee is hosting a week-long celebration of events. The University's 21st annual celebration, with the theme, “UNITY, CommUNITY, and OpportUNITY,” will take place Jan. 17-22.

Beginning at 7 pm, Rev. Dr. Jack Sullivan Jr., a distinguished OHIO alum, will moderate a live webinar where he will interview the Rev. Dr. Bernard LaFayette Jr.

An original Freedom Rider, the Rev. Dr. Bernard Lafayette, Jr. co-founded the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) in 1960 and was a core leader of the civil rights movement in Nashville, TN, in 1960 and in Selma, AL, in 1965.

As part of the May 17th Nashville Student Movement Ride, Lafayette endured jail time in Birmingham, riots and fire bombings in Montgomery, AL, and arrest in Jackson, MS, and jail time at Parchman State Prison Farm during June 1961. He directed the Alabama Voter Registration Project in 1962. He was appointed by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. to be National Program Administrator for the Southern Christian Leadership Conference and National Coordinator of the 1968 Poor People’s Campaign.

“We are excited to host this very special event for our campus and community.” said Pamela Kaylor, Diversity Committee member. “It is so important to learn about the crucial work started by Dr. King Jr. that has continued over the last sixty years by others, like Dr. Lafayette Jr. and Dr. Sullivan Jr.”.

To watch the presentation by Dr. Lafayette Jr. virtually, register at: https://bit.ly/Lancaster_MLK

For a full schedule of MLK Week Events, please see below.

Monday, Jan. 17 (National MLK Jr. Day)

Silent March in Athens, OH

Time: 10:30 a.m.

Location: Galbreath Chapel

Sponsor: Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. 

The Silent March will begin in front of Galbreath Chapel and end at the fourth-floor entrance of Baker University Center. This event is open to the public. 

MLK Jr. Celebratory Brunch with Featured Speaker – Patricia Russell-McCloud, Esq.

Time: 11 a.m.

Location: Baker University Center Ballroom, Athens, OH

Sponsors: Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., MLK Jr. Celebration Committee, others to be announced.

The annual brunch will include dance and vocal performances and feature a keynote address by Pat Russell-McCloud, Esq.

Ticket prices: Non-student brunch tickets are $25 each; OHIO student brunch tickets are $15 each. Non-student sponsorships (includes a table of six seats) are $300 per table, OHIO student sponsorships (includes a table of six seats) are $150 per table, Individuals, departments, organizations, and companies that purchase a table will be recognized as event sponsors.

A $500 Celebration sponsorship for all the week’s events is also available. This includes a table for six at the brunch, with certificate of sponsorship to be presented during the brunch program.

Tickets and sponsorships may be purchased online or by contacting the Division of Diversity and Inclusion at diversityinclusion@ohio.edu.

The University’s celebration will continue throughout the week and below is a preliminary list of events.

Tuesday, Jan. 18 (all campuses)

Featured speaker: The Rev. Dr. Bernard Lafayette Jr., moderated by the Rev. Dr. Jack Sullivan Jr.

Time: 7 to 8 p.m.

Location: This event will be held virtually with some screenings on regional campuses. Ohio University Lancaster will screen the virtual event in the theatre, with a full program beginning at 5:30 p.m.  Register for the virtual session: https://bit.ly/Lancaster_MLK

Sponsors: OHIO’s regional campuses and MLK Jr. Planning Committee

The Rev. Dr. LaFayette, one of the original Freedom Fighters, is an American civil rights activist and organizer who was a leader in the civil rights movement. He played a leading role in early organizing of the Selma voting rights movement; was a member of the Nashville Student Movement; and worked closely throughout the 1960s movements with groups such as the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC), and the American Friends Service Committee.


The Rev. Dr. Bernard LaFayette Jr.

Wednesday, Jan. 19 (Athens, OH)

Well-being Wednesday Resource Fair

Time: 4 to 6 p.m.

Location: Baker 240 and 242

Sponsor: MLK Jr. Celebration Committee

Thursday, Jan. 20

Bridging the Gap: Unifying Our Community (Athens, OH)

Time: Noon to 1:30 p.m.

Location: Baker 240 and 242

Sponsors: Bobcats Lead Change and MLK Jr. Celebration Committee


“Why Justice Seekers Need Co-Conspirators More than Allies" (virtual event)

Time: 5:30 to 6:30 p.m.

Location: Hosted virtually via Teams

Sponsor: MLK Jr. Celebration Committee

In this forum, participants will consider the limitations of allyship while discovering steps they can take to work as co-conspirators who live in solidarity with justice-seeking people and communities.

Facilitator: The Rev. Jack Sullivan Jr., D.Min., D.D., (BSC '83), executive director of the Ohio Council of Churches and Recipient of the 2020 Social Justice Award from the State of Ohio Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday Commission.

Friday, Jan. 21 (Athens, OH)

Variety Show

Time: 6 to 8 p.m.

Location: Baker University Center Theatre (second Floor)

Sponsor: MLK Jr. Celebration Committee

Saturday, Jan. 22 (Athens, OH)

Day of Service – Letter Writing Campaign

Time: 1 to 3 p.m.

Location: 29 Park Place (Academic Engagement Center)

Sponsor: MLK Jr. Celebration Committee

More information and details about the celebration’s events will be released the first week of January. Visit OHIO’s 2022 Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration webpage for more information and to register to attend the events.