Thank you for joining us!
“If you want to say that I was a drum major, say that I was a drum major for justice; say that I was a drum major for peace; I was a drum major for righteousness… We all have the drum major instinct.” – Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
The 4th annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration “Embracing the Dream” will take place on Friday, Jan. 15, 2021, from noon-1 p.m. This year, we will have a virtual celebration exemplifying Dr. King's teachings due to the pandemic.
Master of Ceremonies
Rene Knot, co-anchor on Today in St. Louis, KSDK-TV
During this celebration, we will recognize four local unsung heroes and student scholars in our communities. Guests will enjoy great music from local singer-songwriter Brian Owens and a courageous conversation about rising above the challenges of race, injustice, and exclusion, including commentary from Bryant McBride and Willie O’Ree.
- Bryant McBride is the first African American class president at the famed United States Military Academy at West Point. He earned a master's degree in public administration from Harvard University. Bryant worked as an analyst before becoming the highest-ranking African American executive in the history of the National Hockey League (NHL). He is the producer of 'WILLIE,' a sports documentary film on the pioneering hockey player Willie O'Ree.
- Willie Eldon O'Ree is the first Black hockey player to play in a National Hockey League (NHL) game. He debuted with the Boston Bruins against the Montreal Canadiens at the Montreal Forum on Jan. 18, 1958. O’Ree stopped skating in 1979 after a lengthy stint in the Western Hockey League, playing with teams in Los Angeles and San Diego. From 1998 to the present, he serves as the director of youth development for the NHL/USA Hockey Diversity Task Force. In 2018, he was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame.
Drum Major awards are bestowed upon unsung local heroes who have given their time, talents, treasure, and service in the name of justice, equity, and equality. The 2021 Drum Major Award recipients are:
- Adrian Bracy – CEO of YWCA Metro St. Louis
- Chris Krehmeyer – President/CEO of Beyond Housing
- Elizabeth Perkins – Campus President Florissant Valley, St. Louis Community College
- Keith Williamson – President, Centene Charitable Foundation at Centene Corporation
Drum Major Scholarships will be awarded to student scholars from Ferguson-Florissant, Hazelwood, Jennings, Normandy, Ritenour, and Riverview Gardens school districts; Incarnate Word Academy, Cardinal Ritter College Preparatory, Trinity Catholic and Lutheran North high schools and St. Louis Community College.
Charitable contributions donated during this celebration will help support scholarships for local high school students and a junior college student pursuing a career in nursing, The Building Healthy Community Fund, as well as the Medication Indigent Fund.
Christian Hospital and Northwest HealthCare, members of BJC HealthCare, provide world-class medical care to the communities of North County, Greater St. Louis County and Southern Illinois.