2022 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Virtual Celebration

Tuesday, January 18, 2022 6pm to 7:30pm

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St. Louis Community College at Florissant Valley and North County Churches Uniting for Racial Harmony and Justice will host their annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration Tuesday, Jan. 18.

This virtual event will include inspiring speeches, celebrate excellence in the community with a formal award presentation and more.

(See Event Program Below)

2022 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Virtual Celebration


Tyler Hoskins, student emcee, freshman, graphic communications

Lift Every Voice and Sing

Alayna Epps, University of Missouri-St. Louis vocalist
Paul Higdon, DMA, professor of music and pianist

STLCC-Florissant Valley Student Speakers

Beyonce’ Hightower, freshman, general transfer
Javon Spearman, freshman, general transfer, STEM

Introduction of 2022 Dr. Rance Thomas Excellence in Community Partnership Award Recipient: Emerson Electric Co.

Elizabeth Perkins, Ed.D., president, STLCC-Florissant Valley
Jeff Pittman, Ph.D., chancellor, STLCC

Introduction of NCCU’s Oratorical Contest Winners

Rance Thomas, Ph.D., president, NCCU
Barbara Thompson, Ed.D., vice president, NCCU

Grades 3-5

Amani Cobb, Combs Intermediate School, Ferguson-Florissant School District, Trinity Mt. Carmel Baptist Church

Grades 9-12

Shawn Jackson, McCluer North High School, Ferguson-Florissant School District Jiyu Zhang, Hazelwood West High School, Hazelwood School District


Reva Gomes, parent, Hazelwood Central High School, Hazelwood School District


Lynda Phillips, teacher assistant, Keeven Elementary School, Hazelwood School District

Keynote Address

Michael P. McMillan, president and CEO, the Urban League of Metropolitan Saint Louis Inc.


Michael P. McMillan, president and chief executive officer of the Urban League of Metropolitan Saint Louis Inc., will speak on the celebration’s theme, “We're Better Together."

Michael P. McMillan headshot Michael P. McMillan is president and CEO of the Urban League of Metropolitan Saint Louis Inc., a nonprofit organization providing social services to the Metropolitan St. Louis community since 1918. The Saint Louis Urban League was the first affiliate of the National Urban League movement to be awarded a five-star rating, which it holds to this day. The Urban League’s mission is “to assist African Americans and others throughout the region in securing economic self-reliance, social equality and civil rights.” Each year, the Urban League serves more than 125,000 residents through programming supporting economic opportunity, educational excellence, community empowerment, civil rights, and advocacy.

McMillan has received hundreds of awards and commendations from various organizations. He was recently inducted into the International Civil Rights Walk of Fame as its youngest member and named the 2020 Person of the Year by “The St. Louis American.”

He was also named one of the Ebony Power 100 Most Influential African Americans in the United States. Additionally, he is the recipient of the 2013 International Trumpet Award for Community Service; the Whitney M. Young and the John Mack Leadership Awards from the National Urban League; the Chairman’s Award presented by the St. Louis Minority Supplier Development Council and a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Montford Point Marine Association Inc.

McMillan is a member of the boards of directors of the following companies and organizations: The Saint Louis Zoo Association, Enterprise Bank & Trust, Harris-Stowe State University, The US Bank Advisory Board, The St. Louis Sports Commission, Heat Up St. Louis, Inc. (Cool Down St. Louis), The St. Louis Community Foundation, The St. Louis Municipal Opera Theatre, and the Greater St. Louis Area Council-Boy Scouts of America.

He is a graduate of Saint Louis University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in African American Studies and a minor in political science with an emphasis in finance. Additionally, McMillan is an Eisenhower Fellow, an American Council of Young Political Leaders alumnus, member of the Eta Boulè Chapter of Sigma Pi Phi Fraternity Inc., 100 Black Men of Metropolitan St. Louis, and St. Alphonsus Liguori “Rock” Catholic Church.

“Lift Every Voice and Sing” by James Weldon Johnson

Also known as “The Black National Anthem”

Lift every voice and sing,
Till earth and heaven ring.
Ring with the harmonies of Liberty;
Let our rejoicing rise,
High as the listening skies,
Let it resound loud as the rolling sea.
Sing a song full of the faith that the dark past has taught us,
Sing a song full of the hope that the present has brought us;
Facing the rising sun of our new day begun,
Let us march on till victory is won.

Stony the road we trod,
Bitter the chastening rod,
Felt in the days when hope unborn had died;
Yet with a steady beat,
Have not our weary feet,
Come to the place for which our fathers sighed?
We have come over a way that with tears has been watered,
We have come, treading our path through the blood of the slaughtered,
Out from the gloomy past,
Here now we stand at last
Where the white gleam of our bright star is cast.

God of our weary years,
God of our silent tears,
Thou who has brought us thus far on the way;
Thou who has by Thy might,
Led us into the light,
Keep us forever in the path, we pray.
Lest our feet stray from the places, our God, where we met Thee,
Lest our hearts, drunk with the wine of the world, we forget, Thee,
Shadowed beneath Thy hand,
May we forever stand,
True to our God,
True to our native land.


MLK Celebration Planning Committee

  • Committee Chair | Amy Brown-Marshall
  • Dwayne Morgan
  • Shantana Stewart
  • Aaron Linder
  • Elizabeth Perkins, Ed.D.
  • Rance Thomas, Ph.D.
  • Bryant “T.” Williamson
  • Mike Metroulas
  • Lynn Selders
  • Shanda Walker


  • Tekisha Blue
  • Sierra Eason
  • Solomon Jackson


Event Details