Events set to honor Dr. Martin Luther King

Sunday, December 12, 2004

The Rev. Earl Nance Jr., pastor of the Greater Mount Carmel Missionary Baptist Church in St. Louis, will be the keynote speaker at Southeast Missouri State University's 20th annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Breakfast Jan. 17 in the Show Me Center.

The theme for the 2005 breakfast, which honors the slain civil rights leader, is "Embracing the Future/Fulfilling the Dream." Doors open for the event at 7:30 a.m. The program begins at 8 a.m.

Tickets will not be sold at the door, but will be available in advance now through noon on Jan. 11 at the Southeast Bookstore. Other ticket outlets include the Show Me Center and the Cape Girardeau Chamber of Commerce office.

Nance served on the St. Louis Board of Education from 1987 to 1997, including three terms as board president. He has been president of the Missouri Progressive Baptist Convention and president of the Progressive National Baptist Convention Midwest Region Congress of Christian Education, serving as dean of the congress in 1980.

A number of other local events are planned in remembrance of King.

The 15th annual Community Celebration-Gospel Extravaganza is scheduled for 7 p.m. at Cape First Church, 254 S. Silver Springs Road in Cape Girardeau. The event will feature guest performer Dr. Fairest Hill.

Hill is a nationally known motivational speaker for youth groups across the nation. He reaches out to a million youths each year with his motivating seminars and personal story of overcoming defeat through perseverance. He has developed two curricula, "Project 2000: Building Leaders for the 21st Century" and "Project Advance: Empowerment, Entrepreneurship and Excellence."

Hill published the book "Yes, You Can Win -- The ABC's of Success," and has released his fourth project, "This is Your Moment," along with the song "It's a New Season," which was featured on the Bobby Jones Top 20 Gospel Radio Countdown Nationally Syndicated Radio Broadcast The community celebration also will include performances by various area groups and the presentation of the annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Service Award. The event is open to the public. For more information, contact Rev. David Allen Sr. at 651-3698 or Debra Mitchell-Braxton at 651-5186.

A program titled "Passing the Torch of Unity" will be presented at 6:30 p.m. on Jan. 27 in the University Center Ballroom. The program will include a keynote address by Brenda Newberry, president and chief executive officer of the Newberry Group Inc. of St. Louis.

Newberry founded her company in August 1996 following a career spanning more than 20 years in network and systems software. The Newberry Group has expanded to more than 130 employees.

A presentation titled "Artistic Expressions of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s Dream" will be held at 6:30 p.m. Feb. 3 in the University Center Ballroom. Presentations will vary from dance to spoken word. A live auction will be held to support the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Scholarship. Persons interested in performing at the event can contact Mercedes Jackson or Cori McGee at 651-5186.

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