ELLICOTT CITY, MD – Howard County Executive Calvin Ball, the Office of Human Rights and Equity (OHRE) and the Howard County Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday Commission invite you to join them for multiple events this weekend to honor the life and legacy of civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Starting at 2:00 p.m. on Sunday, January 16th, there will be a virtual celebration available to watch on Howard County Government’s YouTube channel and OHRE’s Facebook page, followed by a Day of Service on Monday, January 17th. 
 

Every year, I look forward to the opportunity to honor the life and legacy of Dr. King. This celebration is about acknowledging the students and community leaders serving, protecting, and advocating for all of us here in Howard County. Howard County’s strength is in our commitment to serving those in need, protecting the vulnerable, and advocating for justice.

Calvin Ball
Howard County Executive

This Sunday’s family-friendly, multi-cultural event will include musical performances, dramatic presentations, a keynote address by Wes Moore and recognition of the 2022 Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. “Living the Dream” Award recipients and student essay and poster contest winners.

The Howard County Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday celebration is about recognizing how Dr. King’s dream lives on in the service of our community leaders and the vision of our students. This year’s winners are an excellent example of this very thing.

Yolanda F. Sonnier
OHRE Administrator

“Living the Dream” Award and Student Essay and Poster Contests Winners:

The “Living the Dream” Award honors individuals and organizations who exemplify the work and legacy of Dr. King. This year’s honorees are Ayra Mazhar Hussain, Larry Walker and the Women’s Giving Circle of Howard County, recognized for their devotion to the community.
 
For the student essay and poster contests, students were asked to reflect upon Dr. King’s statement, and this year’s contest theme, “Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly.” For the essay contests, middle and high school students discussed what could be done to foster an inclusive culture in your school, community or organization. Students with disabilities were encouraged to participate in the essay contest submitting entries using other media and/or visual representation to convey their message. For the poster contest, elementary and middle school students composed an original piece of artwork that showed their interpretation of the theme. The contest winners are:

Essay Contest – High School

  • 1st Place: Similoluwa Adeniyi, 11th Grade, Atholton High School
  • 2nd Place: James Jiyu Obasiolu, 9th Grade, Atholton High School
  • 3rd Place: Gabrielle Dougé, 9th Grade, Glenelg High School

Essay Contest – Middle School

  • 1st Place: Karon Robinson, 6th Grade, Thomas Viaduct Middle School
  • 2nd Place: Chidera Nwokeh, 8th Grade, Thomas Viaduct Middle School
  • 3rd Place: Raima Shah, 7th Grade, Elkridge Landing Middle School

Poster Contest – Elementary and Middle School

  • 1st Place: Ameyah Beroid, 3rd Grade, Talbott Springs Elementary School
  • 2nd Place: Eli Mathieu, 4th Grade, Dayton Oaks Elementary School
  • 3rd Place: Anayah Mathieu, 1st Grade, Dayton Oaks Elementary School

“Our Howard County students did a phenomenal job interpreting the words of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. It was truly difficult choosing this year’s winners. We are proud of all of our students. The work of this year’s winners truly stood out as a beacon of light illuminating the leaders of tomorrow for justice and advocacy,” said Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday Commission President Dr. A. Diane Martin.

“Day of Service Across Howard County”:

Residents are also encouraged to participate in the County’s “Day of Service Across Howard County” project on Monday, January 17th. Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, this year’s event will again be different from year’s past. On the 17th, OHRE and the Commission will host a number of virtual events, ranging from HopeWorks of Howard County’s “I Can I Will’ Create Peace” virtual workshop at 2:00 p.m., to a screening and panel discussion on the short environmental justice film, Disruption: Baltimore’s Highway to Nowhere, at 7:00 p.m.

In addition to Monday’s virtual events, OHRE and the Commission will also be hosting a number of food donation drives on the 17th. Participants can donate to the Howard County Food Bank through its Amazon Wish List, make a monetary donation to the Community Action Council of Howard County’s 2022 MLK Day Virtual Food Drive, or drop-off donations to the Howard County Food Bank, located at 9385 Gerwig Lane J in Columbia, on the 17th between 10:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. Residents can also drop-off donations to the Howard County Food Bank throughout the year, open Monday through Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

The Howard County Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday Commission was established to encourage and coordinate activities and ceremonies throughout Howard County to honor the birthday, ideals and legacy of Dr. King.
 
For more information about the Commission visit OHRE’s website or contact the office at 410-313-6430 or email [email protected]

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