Celebration for MLK to be held Sunday

Stanley Pritchett

Stanley Pritchett

COVINGTON -- The 25th annual community celebration of the life and works of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. will be held at 3 p.m. Sunday at Olive Swann Porter Auditorium at Newton High School.

The organizing committee is encouraging everyone to come out and honor King as well as some Newton County residents who are continuing his legacy.

"The mere fact that Dr. King gave his life so we all can reap the benefits of special freedoms that were denied for so long -- freedoms for all mankind, not just the African-American community, but across the board -- (is why) we should honor his memory by coming out," said Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration Committee Secretary Josephine Brown.

The keynote speaker for the event will be Dr. Stanley J. Pritchett Sr., acting president of Morris Brown College. Pritchett began his career as a public school teacher and worked his way through the administrative ranks, serving in positions such as athletics director, principal, and superintendent. He was recognized as the DeKalb County School System's first Principal of the Year.

Upon retirement from the public school sector, he accepted leadership at the struggling Morris Brown College. According to a press release issued by Morris Brown, during the past four years, Pritchett has helped increase enrollment, implement a more relevant academic program serving the needs of a diverse student population and laid the groundwork for the school to regain accreditation.

Other highlights of the event will include the presentation of the I Have A Dream Award, which goes to an individual who epitomizes the philosophy of Dr. King, and the Trailblazer Award, which is given to someone who has contributed a lifetime of community service.

Also, representatives of city and county government, the Newton County School System and Oxford College will speak. Music will be presented by The Newton County Community Band and the Martin Luther King Ecumenical Choir.

In honor of King, Oxford College and Emory University partner each year with the community to provide a full scholarship to a Newton County student. The scholarship is awarded at the end of the school year. The community can contribute to the fund by mailing a contribution to the King Celebration Committee at P.O. Box 185, Covington, GA, 30015 or to Oxford College of Emory University, co/o Dean Stephen Bowen, 100 Hamill St., Oxford, GA 30054.

For more information, call 770-787-0038.