Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration
In the event of inclement weather, the MLK Celebration will occur as planned.
In a sermon delivered over a half century ago, the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. described what he called the “Drum Major Instinct” to the congregation in Atlanta's Ebenezer Baptist Church. The sermon includes the following passage from Dr. King that acknowledged the desire to lead but emphasizes selfless motives: “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.”
The words he spoke that day serve as inspiration for scholarships we will award to deserving high school students who aspire to careers in healthcare. One $500 scholarship each is available for Jennings, Normandy, Hazelwood, Ferguson-Florissant and Riverview Gardens school districts; Incarnate Word Academy, Cardinal Ritter College Preparatory, Trinity Catholic and Lutheran North high schools and St. Louis Community College.
These words also serve as inspiration for a Drum Major Award in honor of unsung individuals who have given their time, talents, and treasure in service of justice and equality. The 2020 Drum Major Award recipients are Dr. Lynn Beckwith, Jr.; Rosemary Hanley; Honorable Rev. Tommie Pierson, Sr.; Honorable Betty Thompson and The Empowerment Network.
The Drum Major Scholarships and Drum Major Awards will be presented during the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration Luncheon. The keynote address will be given by the Honorable Dr. Michael A. Battle. His service to the nation included serving as U.S. Ambassador to the African Union, representative to the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa and senior advisor to the State Department for the U.S./Africa Leaders Summit hosted by President Barack Obama.
Musical selections provided by Cheryl Brown and Friends. Complimentary valet parking.
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2020 Drum Major Award Recipients
LYNN BECKWITH JR., ED.D.
Chair, Riverview Gardens School District Special Administrative Board
President, Saint Louis County Library Board of Trustees
Chief Executive Officer and Co-founder
The Little Bit Foundation
HONORABLE REV. TOMMIE PIERSON SR.
Mayor, Bellefontaine Neighbors
Pastor, Greater St. Mark Family Church
Former State Representative
HONORABLE BETTY THOMPSON
Former State Representative
Civil Rights Activist
THE EMPOWERMENT NETWORK
Resource center for patients & families affected by prostate cancer
Drum Major Awards are bestowed upon unsung individuals who have given time, talents, and treasure in service of justice and equality.
MLK Presenting Sponsor
Centene Charitable Foundation
St. Louis Community College Foundation
Hazelwood School District
North County Inc.
BJC Planning, Design and Construction
The Estates Communities
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.