The public is invited to celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day at the University of Hartford on Monday, Jan. 21 at 11 a.m. The inspirational program of music and reflections commemorating the life and legacy of the civil rights leader will take place in the University’s Lincoln Theater located on the campus. The event is free and open to the public.
The 2013 program theme is “The Right to Dream: Building a Dream, Acting with Purpose,” and will feature musical selections by Shawnn Monteiro, Nat Reeves, Mark Templeton and Shauntice Marshall (GPD ’14) of The Hartt School and by the University of Hartford Magnet School Chorus. A performance of original poetry will be done by Bo-Edward Lawrence, a first-year student at the University and a graduate of the University High School of Science and Engineering. The keynote address will be given by Teresa Younger, executive director of Connecticut's Permanent Commission on the Status of Women. In addition, student winners of the 2013 Martin Luther King Jr. essay contest will be recognized.
Keynote speaker Teresa Younger has a long history of commitment to civil rights and civil liberties. Prior to joining the Permanent Commission on the Status of Women, Younger was director of affiliate organizational development at the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) national office and the first woman and first African American to serve as executive director of the ACLU of Connecticut. Currently she is president of the board of the Girl Scouts of Connecticut and serves on the boards of the Women’s Campaign School at Yale University, the Connecticut Women’s Hall of Fame, the Universal Health Care Foundation of Connecticut and the National Association of Commissions for Women. She was honored by the Connecticut NAACP as one of the “100 Most Influential Blacks in the State of Connecticut” in both 2009 and 2011, and was named by the Hartford Business Journal in 2008 as one of “Eight Remarkable Women in Business.”
Later in January and in February, the University's Martin Luther King Day Planning Committee will continue the celebration of the legacy of the Civil Rights Movement with a three-part film and discussion series that is free and open to the public. On January 29, a portion of the highly-acclaimed civil rights documentary “Eyes on the Prize” will be shown with discussion led by Professor Warren Goldstein. On February 5, “Red Tails,” a film about a group of African American servicemen known as the Tuskegee Airmen will be shown with discussion led by attorney Roy Collins. On Feb. 12, the documentary “Brother Outsider: The Life of Bayard Rustin” will be shown with discussion led by Associate Professor Bilal Sekou. Rustin was the organizer of the 1963 March on Washington and received an honorary degree from the University of Hartford in 1979.
The film and discussion will begin at 7 p.m. on each date in the University’s Konover Campus Center.