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Northland’s King celebration is Monday

Martin Luther King Jr.
Martin Luther King Jr. KRT

The Northland’s 31st annual Martin Luther King Jr. Day Celebration is at 10:30 a.m. Monday at William Jewell College’s Gano Chapel.

The program will include an address by the Rev. Susan McCann, last year’s recipient of the Invictus Award for social justice. McCann is rector at Grace Episcopal Church in Liberty.

Before the Celebration a forum on “Race in the Northland” will be held in the Gano Assembly Hall beginning with a breakfast at 8 a.m. followed by the forum from 8:30 a.m. to 10 a.m. It is free and open to the public.

The Martin Luther King Jr. Community Service Awards for 2015 will be given to:

▪ Ed Collins, retired chief of police for the city of Liberty;

▪ Sherri McCall, a Northland artist;

▪ Students James Harvey, Florissant; and Christina Pratt, Kansas City. Both are William Jewell College seniors.

The Rev. Tony P. Johnson, pastor of Liberty First Baptist Church, will receive the Invictus Award for social justice.

The theme for the 31st annual Martin Luther King Day Celebration is “2015: A Century of Civil Rights Milestones and Struggles,” said Cecelia Robinson, event organizer.

“Even though we have an African-American president there’s more racism that has exploded in our country, not because of him, but we have this racial unrest, police brutality and all these things that are going on at this time. I believe that our Clay County community is ready to take a leadership role to promote positive human relations among the races during this time of unrest in our country,” she said.

The program will also include a solo by Diane Allen of First Baptist Church; performances by the William Jewell College Concert Choir and the Liberty First Baptist Church choir; and a praise dance by a youth from Liberty’s African Methodist Episcopal Church.

William Jewell College is at 500 College Hill, Liberty.