The week begins with the 34th annual University/Community Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Banquet and Award Presentation, hosted by the MLK Jr. Corporation, in partnership with UNC’s Office for Diversity & Inclusion. The MLK University/Community Planning Corporation, a non-profit group founded in 1993, raises scholarship funds for high school students in Chapel Hill, Carrboro and Orange County and UNC students who work to improve the quality of life for everyone in the community. Each year, the Corporation also honors citizens in “recognition of enduring service to humanity by word and by deed” through the Annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Citizenship Awards. This year’s speaker will be Dr. Reginald Hildebrand. Professor Hildebrand retired from UNC in 2016 and is the author of The Times Were Strange and Stirring: Methodist Preachers and the Crisis of Emancipation (Duke University Press, 1995) and is currently working on a book with the working title, The Cleverest Document Issued This Century: Abraham Lincoln, the Emancipation Proclamations and the Meanings of Freedom. He was awarded UNC’s Tanner Faculty Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching in 2012, is a former co-chair of the NC Freedom Monument Project and a former trustee of the NC Humanities Council. He was also a member of the NC African American Heritage Commission and the Advisory Board for the NC Historical Review.
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