I can never be what I ought to be until you are what you ought to be.

DR. MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR.—'Remaining Awake Through A Great Revolution,' June 2, 1959

2013   39th Annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration


Exhibit

MIT Homepage-MLK Celebration_21 Jan 2013

MIT Homepage, 21 Jan 2013


THEME

Illuminating the Elements of Meritocracy


KEYNOTE

Paula Williams Madison
Chairman/CEO, WNBA's Los Angeles Sparks


MLK LEADERSHIP AWARDEES

Colin “Topper” Carew
Filmmaker/Artist
Visiting Scholar/Researcher, MIT Media Lab

Priscilla King Gray
Co-founder, MIT Public Service Center
Honorary Chair (2004-2012), MIT Women's League
MIT First Lady 1980–1990

Jocelyn O. Joseph, M.D.
Chief of Pediatrics, MIT Medical

Bomy Lee Chung 'G
Chemical Engineering, MIT Langer Lab

Uddhav Sharma '15
Mathematics

WMBR 88.1 FM
MIT Student Radio Station


 EXHIBIT

IAP MLK Design Seminar

KEYNOTE BIO

paula-madisonTelevision executive and journalist Paula Williams Madison is Chairman and CEO of the Los Angeles Sparks, a professional team of the Women's National Basketball Association (WNBA).

Born to Jamaican parents in Harlem, New York, Madison earned a BA from Vassar College in 1974. She went on to study communications at Syracuse University's Newhouse School of Public Communication and work as a reporter at the Syracuse Herald Journal.

Madison spent her early career as a newspaper reporter in New York and Texas, and as a television news manager and executive in Dallas, Tulsa and Houston. After working as assistant news director at NBC4 in New York, she became the station’s vice president and news director in 1996. Shortly after, she took on a second role as senior vice president of diversity for NBC.

In 2000, Madison was promoted to president and general manager of KNBC, making her the first African-American woman to become a general manager of a top news network. She then stepped down from the diversity leadership role and, when NBC purchased Telemundo, a Spanish-language network, Madison also assumed responsibility for the newly acquired Telemundo stations in Los Angeles, California.

In 2007, Madison was appointed executive vice president and chief diversity officer of NBC Universal. The parent company, GE, named her a company officer and vice president. Madison’s family owned Williams Group Holdings LLC, which has significant investments in media (The Africa Channel), a sports franchise (the WNBA’s Los Angeles Sparks), and various real estate, consumer, financial and trading businesses.

In addition to being named chairman and CEO of the Los Angeles Sparks, she also became a member of the WNBA Board of Governors.

Paula Madison (center) poses with the MIT women's basketball team. Photo: DAPER, MIT News, 2013

Paula Madison (center) poses with the MIT women's basketball team. Photo: DAPER, MIT News, 2013

Madison is a board member of Greater Los Angeles United Way, a past chairman of the California Science Center Foundation, vice chair of National Medical Fellowships, the Maynard Institute for Journalism Education, Cardinal Spellman High School, and chair of The Nell Williams Family Foundation. In 2013, Mayor Eric Garcetti appointed her a commissioner of the Los Angeles Police Department.

Madison has received many awards, including the Ida B. Wells award from the National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) in 1998, the Ellis Island Medal of Honor from the National Ethnic Coalition of Organizations in 1999, and the First Amendment Service Award from the Radio and Television News Directors Foundation in 2000. In 2005, Madison was named one of the “75 Most Powerful African Americans in Corporate America” by Black Enterprise magazine and was included in the Hollywood Reporter’s “Power 100.” She received the NABJ Legacy Award in 2010, was named to Ebony magazine’s 2013 Power 100 List, and also received the Pinnacle Award from the Houston Association of Black Journalists.

Madison and her husband, Roosevelt Madison, live in Los Angeles, California.

Read more about Paula Madison at The HistoryMakers

MLK LEADERSHIP AWARD

topper-carew-150x150Topper Carew is a Visiting Researcher/Scholar at the MIT Media Lab. He has earned degrees in Architecture and Environmental Design from Yale and has had fully supporting fellowships at MIT (Community Fellow) and from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (Broadcast Fellow).  The former allowed Carew to complete three films and study at MIT’s then film school.  The latter allowed him to spend time at the BBC/London and at the studios in Hollywood. He also has a Doctorate in Communications from the Union Graduate School/Institute for Policy Studies.

Carew started his film career by making documentaries about the relationship between neighborhood people and architecture, by using it as an empowerment, community organizing and fundraising tool, and by teaching film to inner city kids.  He did all of this at The New Thing Art and Architecture Center, an arts program in the Adams Morgan section of Washington, D.C.  Carew was the New Thing’s founder and director. The fellowship at MIT allowed Carew to make the full transition into film. And to date, Carew has won more than 40 film and television awards, and 8 Gold Medals for graphic design.

After MIT, he spent 4 years at WGBH (Boston) where he produced Say Brother and several national series for PBS (Say Brother National Edition, Rebop I & II, and Tonight From Harvard Square).  While there, Carew rose to the rank of Program Manager and subsequently shared responsibility for all of WGBH’s program development and production.

After WGBH, Carew founded an independent production company, Rainbow Television Workshop. It produced series and movies for PBS, HBO, Showtime, Nick and The Disney Channel.  Other projects have aired in prime time on ABC, NBC, and FOX.  His theatrically released films include DC Cab (Universal Pictures) and Breakin‘ and Enterin’ (Shapiro/Glickenhaus). One of his prime time television series, Martin (FOX), enjoys the rarified distinction of having attained off network syndication (TNT,TV One, and MTV)

Carew has served on a number of boards. They include the National Urban Coalition, the DC Arts Commission, The Children’s Foundation, The Institute of Contemporary Art (Boston), The Negro Scholarship Fund, the Social Venture Network, the LA Children’s Museum, and the First African Meeting House.  He was also appointed to a Presidential Commission on African American History and Culture.

His awards include 3 Action for Children’s Television Awards, 4 NAACP Image Awards, a People’s Choice Award, and a Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award.

In all, Carew has produced (8) national television series, (15) documentaries, 4 theatrically released films, 15 movies for television and 300 live concerts.

Three recent honors include the Boston Neighborhood Network’s “ National Media Hero Award”, the “Hometown Video Award” for the best Public Access On Air television promotional campaign in the nation, and an appointment as “Artist in Residence” at the historic Trinity Church in Boston.

MLK LEADERSHIP AWARD

Priscilla King Gray at the 2015 MIT Awards Convocation. Photo: Justin Knight 2015

Priscilla King Gray at the 2015 MIT Awards Convocation. Photo: Justin Knight 2015

Priscilla King Gray was honored with an MLK Leadership Award for her legacy of service and volunteerism, inspiring students and faculty to give back to their community.

Gray is a former first lady of MIT and still a warm presence and leader at the Institute. Except for two years in the military, her husband, Paul Gray '54 (MIT’s 14th president from 1980 to 1990 and 2002 MLK Leadership Award recipient), has been at MIT since he enrolled as a freshman in 1950. Mrs. Gray has been at his side for most of those years. She was committed to the total MIT community—faculty, students, and staff—and she made the president’s house available for many gatherings.

MLK Day march to Kresge, 1982. Left to right: Charles S. Brown, Paul E. Gray, Priscilla K. Gray, Clarence G. Williams. Courtesy: MIT Museum

MLK Day march to Kresge, 1982. Left to right: Charles S. Brown, Paul E. Gray, Priscilla K. Gray, Clarence G. Williams. Courtesy: MIT Museum

In 1988, Gray co-founded MIT’s Public Service Center Priscilla Gray co-founded the PSC with then-dean of student affairs Shirley McBay and mechanical-engineering professor Robert Mann. The PSC — renamed in her honor as the Priscilla King Gray Public Service Center in 2015 — promotes service to the MIT community, the Boston area, and the world by providing grants, advice, and logistical support. Gray has since remained an advocate for its work.

She also helped to guide and shape the organization now known as the Women’s League, taught crewel embroidery, raised four children, served as a hospital volunteer, and provided aid, comfort, food, and guidance not only to her husband, but to generations of students, faculty, staff, and others in the MIT community.

Mrs. Gray is an honorary member of the MIT Alumni Association and was presented with its Bronze Beaver Award in 1990 in recognition of her service to the Institute and the Alumni Association. She served as the Women's League’s Honorary Chair during MIT president Susan Hockfield's leadership (2004-2012).

At the 1994 Women's League’s annual meeting, Mrs. Gray said that “every first lady must bring with her three things: a sense of herself; a sense of humor; and a love of people.”


 

MLK LEADERSHIP AWARD

Jocelyn-Joseph-mlk-award-2013Dr. Jocelyn Joseph, Chief of Pediatrics at MIT Medical, was honored with a staff MLK Leadership Award for her devoted service to the health of the MIT community members and their families.

Joseph, a mother of two children, specializes in adolescent and young adult (ages 14-17) healthcare. "I try to establish a good relationship with kids when they’re young," she says, "so that later on in life, when they face more serious issues, that trust will already be there."

In 1995, Joseph earned MD and MPH degrees from Harvard Medical School and Harvard School of Public Health, respectively. She was also a Fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics. Board-certified in Pediatrics, Joseph has been a Clinical Instructor in Pediatrics at Harvard Medical School.

Her hospital affiliations are Mount Auburn Hospital, Brigham & Women’s Hospital, and the Children’s Hospital in Boston, where she interned and completed her residency.

Joseph's care philosophy exemplifies the values of Dr. King: "Creating a partnership with parents and establishing a bond with children are most important in caring for them. Active listening and treating everyone with respect is critical to this relationship. Providing high-quality, convenient pediatric health care is the rule not the exception."

MLK LEADERSHIP AWARD

Bomy-Lee-Chung-mlk-award-2013Bomy Lee Chung holds a BS in Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering from Georgia Institute of Technology and is a PhD candidate in chemical engineering. She is a member of the Langer Lab, and her research focuses on the development and optimization of drug delivery methods for cardiovascular diseases.

Chung was honored with the graduate-student MLK Leadership Award for her extensive service to the MIT community.

She served as Institute Representative for Graduate Students on the MIT Presidential Committee for Race and Diversity in 2011. The Committee is charged "with fostering better relations among the races of people at MIT and helping the community realize the benefits of its cultural and racial diversity". Chung's responsibilities included helping to coordinate a systematic action agenda for improving race relations on campus.

From 2012 to 2013, Chung served as Executive Board Member of Graduate Women at MIT (GWAMIT). During this time, she also helped to oversee the MIT Graduate Student Council (GSC), the largest and most decorated graduate student government in the US. Under Chung's administration as executive officer and as treasurer, the GSC precipitated multi-million dollar housing reform in the city Cambridge, established the first graduate student childcare program, and created long-term strategic relationships with the neighborhoods and city council. The GSC was awarded the Compton Prize, MIT’s most prestigious award, for service to the MIT community.

Since 2013, Chung has participated in the MIT Global Startup Workshop (GSW) as Panel, Marketing, and Scholarship Program Lead. She also serves as Associate Board Director for the MIT Federal Credit Union.

MLK LEADERSHIP AWARD

Uddhav Sharma-mlk-award-2013Mathematics major Uddhav Sharma '11 received the undergraduate MLK Leadership Award for his work in his native village of Necha, Nepal. Apart from his academic work, he volunteered as a tutor to help high school students in science and mathematics.

The rural village of Necha in northern Nepal was devastated by a civil war that ended in 2006. Through Projects for Peace, Sharma designed a project to create sustainable and profitable farming in Necha, generating enough profit to fund the local school (his previous school) and establish a computer lab; its goal was also to foster sustainable and educational opportunities to rejuvenate life in his village. Sharma's project was selected first among 19 undergraduates from MIT and received the $10,000 Davis Peace Fellowship.

Uddhav-working in field

Sharma with village residents, planting their first crop

"The project took approximately three months to complete the beginning phase and it has now been handed over to the community," says Sharma. "Currently we have planted vegetables like cauliflower, chili, turmeric and onion. Ninety percent of annual profit will go to the school. The first contract on leased land lasts for five years and the contract will then be extended. I am very satisfied with my work because this project gave me opportunity to work with my home community and do something meaningful for them. I have now been awarded the Martin Luther King Junior Leadership Award 2013 for my contribution to society, based on this project."


Read more

Creating sustainable educational and economic opportunities in civil war affected rural area (Necha, Nepal)
Project proposal and report

"Students raise donations and awareness after Nepal earthquake"- MIT News, 6 May 2015

"Help rebuild an MIT-inspired school destroyed by Nepal’s earthquakes"- MIT News, 12 June 2015

 

 

MLK LEADERSHIP AWARD

wmbr-logoWMBR, MIT's student-run college radio station, received the MLK Leadership Award for organizations on its 50th anniversary. Licensed to Cambridge, MA and broadcasting on 88.1 FM, the radio station is all-volunteer and funded by listener donations and MIT funds.

Ahmad Salih '72 deejaying for "The Ghetto" at WTBS in 1972. Courtesy: MIT Museum

The first MIT student broadcasting station was first signed on in 1946 as WMIT, becoming WTBS in 1961. Its call sign finally changed to WMBR in 1979, standing for: Walker Memorial Basement Radio.

The MLK Leadership Award honored WMBR for its diverse, community-based programming throughout the years--programs like Captain Al's "The Soul of the Movement," Muna Kangsen's and Julia Mongo's "Africa Kabisa," Brutus Leaderson's "Worldbeat," Cynthia Odu's "In Diaspora," and Alex McNeil's Martin Luther King Day line-up.


Read More

WMBR Dinnertime Sampler: 
Sekazi Mtingwa ’71 (2001-03 MLK Scholar)
Music Playlist [10/16/02]


the ghetto-WTBS

Ahmad Salih '72 deejaying for "The Ghetto" at WTBS in 1972. Courtesy: MIT Museum

Ahmad Salih '72 deejaying for "The Ghetto" at WTBS in 1972. Courtesy: MIT Museum

 

 

 

 

 

 

WMBR deejays Freshman Picnic on Killian, 1985. Courtesy: MIT Museum

WMBR deejays Freshman Picnic on Killian, 1985. Courtesy: MIT Museum

IAP MLK Design Seminar


Photos by hoyin.au at Flickr


 

Annual MLK exhibits opens

Bruno B. F. Faviero, The Tech
February 5, 2013

Tonight marks the opening of the Lobby 10 installation from the Martin Luther King Jr. Design Seminar (17.920), an IAP course where students learned about the Civil Rights Movement and discussed topics like race and identity. The installation will be up until the night of Jan. 14.

The course culminates with display installations made by the students, which this year will tentatively include a map of global issues, a tribute to the black panther party, and a large collage of people from civil rights leaders to MIT students. Many of the installations are interactive in some way, including a jukebox with freedom songs from the 1950s.

Megan E. Bumgarner ’14 worked on a group installation, which consists of two chairs: a “weaker,” divided black and white chair, and a sturdier, checkered chair, which shows “integration as being more stable.”

The class’s instructor, Undergraduate Administrator Tobie Weiner, said that the number of students enrolled in the class has increased every year, and even includes 10 Wellesley students, who made an installation for their campus.

Weiner worries the exhibit might be vandalized as in the past. “I used to think about [vandalism] when we had really controversial things,” said Weiner, “but oddly it seems like the stupidest things are vandalized.” In past years, vandals have switched an Abraham Lincoln cutout with one of Steve Irwin and removed an entire display about the Israeli/Palestinian conflict. Weiner said she doesn’t know if there will be cameras again this year to guard the exhibit as there have been in some years.

MLK Jr. Breakfast addresses elements of meritocracy

Annual gathering features talks by former NBC executive as well as MIT students and administrators.

David L. Chandler, MIT News Office
February 6, 2013

At MIT’s 39th annual Martin Luther King Jr. Breakfast Celebration this morning, members of the Institute community gathered to hear inspiring talks by student leaders; the announcement of this year’s roster of MLK Leadership Award recipients and MLK visiting scholars and professors; rousing musical interludes by the MIT Gospel Choir; and a keynote address by former NBC executive vice president Paula Madison.

Devin Cornish '14, a junior in the Department of Mechanical Engineering, discussed how his family's history influenced his path to MIT. Photo: Dominick Reuter, MIT News 2013

Devin Cornish '14, a junior in the Department of Mechanical Engineering, discussed how his family's history influenced his path to MIT. Photo: Dominick Reuter, MIT News 2013

Several speakers emphasized the importance of family in fostering an appreciation for education, saying that relatives helped them to set high goals and to maintain the self-discipline to achieve them. But they also spoke of the need for a community of people who have shared experience, and who can provide support, advice and encouragement.

Devin Cornish, an MIT junior majoring in mechanical engineering, said his parents and grandparents instilled an appreciation for the importance of a good education. He added that he also learned from the example of Martin Luther King Jr., who taught that all life is interrelated and stressed the importance of mutual support.

Cornish quoted King’s observation that “I cannot be what I ought to be until you are what you ought to be.” Echoing King again, he stressed that advancement should not be seen as a ladder — with one person advancing ahead of everyone else — but rather as an ocean of opportunity where people can follow their dreams in many different directions.

Brain and cognitive sciences doctoral student Joseph Keller spoke about his personal opportunities, and about Dr. King's beliefs regarding the power of education. Photo: Dominick Reuter, MIT News 2013

Brain and cognitive sciences doctoral student Joseph Keller spoke about his personal opportunities, and about Dr. King's beliefs regarding the power of education. Photo: Dominick Reuter, MIT News 2013

Joseph Keller, a graduate student in brain and cognitive sciences, said his parents told him, “‘The most important gift that we give you in this life is a good education.’ … They wholeheartedly believed that providing for me in this way was the most important thing they could do so that I might achieve and become a successful contributing member of society.”

But, Keller said, other support has been essential in realizing this goal. “I have been tremendously fortunate and blessed to have had amazing mentors and an incredible support system, while so many gifted children are deprived of the educational resources and life-changing opportunities that are necessary to succeed in such an achievement-based world,” he said, adding: “It is on the shoulders of Dr. King and many other prominent civil-rights leaders that I’m able to stand before you today as a student at a pre-eminent educational institution like MIT.”

Madison, who grew up in New York with parents of African, Jamaican and Chinese descent, worked as a journalist before rising to run the NBC affiliate in Los Angeles, later becoming a vice president of NBC and of General Electric, its parent company. She was named among the “75 Most Powerful African-Americans in Corporate America” by Black Enterprise magazine in 2005.

Madison stressed the importance of support and encouragement from peers and mentors, saying she had made a gift to her alma mater, Vassar College, to set up such a program. That gift, she said, was designed “to improve the life of all black staff, faculty and students there. … What I wanted to do was insert something that would make a change.”

Madison met with students, faculty and staff after the event. Photo: Dominick Reuter, MIT News 2013

Madison met with students, faculty and staff after the event. Photo: Dominick Reuter, MIT News 2013

In its pursuit of meritocracy, Madison urged the MIT community, “Don’t stop talking about it.” But talking alone is never enough, she added. The next step is, “Now, what are you going to do about it? Everybody may not feel as included as they’d like to be.”

To make meritocracy a reality, she suggested, “It’s probably time to take a multilayered approach” — including asking members of underrepresented groups, “What is the happiness quotient here?”

“We at MIT are thinking hard about [meritocracy], what it means, how it works, how it could be better,” President L. Rafael Reif said in introducing Madison. “How can we come close to our ideals and aspirations?”

Reif said he personally was surprised by how quickly he felt accepted when he arrived at MIT three decades ago, as a foreigner with a strong accent. But, he said, “Meritocracy is not that simple. I might have felt very different if I had arrived with a disability, or as a gay, or an African-American, or as a woman.”

Reif added that, “A belief in the principle of meritocracy doesn’t allow us to believe we’re perfect.” Rather, it is, he said, “a principle we’re proud of, and that we practice as best we can.”

Women's basketball squad meets with WNBA executive

Paula Madison, chairman and CEO of the Los Angeles Sparks, discussed sports gender issues with MIT athletes.

Mindy Brauer | Dept. of Athletics, Physical Education & Recreation 
February 15, 2013

Paula Madison (center) poses with the MIT women's basketball team. Photo: DAPER, MIT News, 2013

Paula Madison (center) poses with the MIT women's basketball team. Photo: DAPER, MIT News, 2013

On Feb. 6, the MIT women’s basketball team had the opportunity to meet with Paula Madison, chairman and CEO of the WNBA’s Los Angeles Sparks and a member of the WNBA Board of Governors. A former executive vice president at NBC, Madison served as the keynote speaker at MIT’s 39th Annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Breakfast Celebration.

During Madison’s lunch with the team, they discussed how as young girls they were encouraged to participate in sports and brainstormed ideas about how to increase the population of young female athletes, in addition to retaining them at the high school and college levels. On the academic side, they talked about how women in sports face similar difficulties as women in engineering.

Earlier in the day at the MLK Jr. Breakfast, Madison addressed this year’s theme, “Illuminating the Elements of Meritocracy.” She stressed the importance of support and encouragement from peers and mentors, saying she had made a gift to her alma mater, Vassar College, to set up such a program. That gift, she said, was designed “to improve the life of all black staff, faculty and students there. … What I wanted to do was insert something that would make a change.”

In its pursuit of meritocracy, Madison urged the MIT community, “Don’t stop talking about it.” But talking alone is never enough, she added. The next step is, “Now, what are you going to do about it? Everybody may not feel as included as they’d like to be.”

To make meritocracy a reality, she suggested, “It’s probably time to take a multilayered approach” — including asking members of underrepresented groups, “What is the happiness quotient here?”

The women’s basketball team closes out the regular season on Saturday, Feb. 16 at Clark University. Should the Engineers come away with a victory, they will clinch a spot in the upcoming New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference championship tournament to be held next week.

"Fifty Years Later: My father and uncle remember the March"

wes-william-harris-msnbc

Wesley (left) and William Harris


 

By Melissa Harris-Perry
August 28, 2013

William and Wesley Harris [1995-96 MLK Visiting Professor, 2001 MLK Leadership Awardee, 2014 Celebration Lifetime Achievement Awardee], twin brothers, were born in 1941 into a poor, African American household and community in Richmond, Virginia. They were nine years old when a heart attack claimed their father’s life, leaving their mother—a domestic worker and seamstress—to rear the boys and their three older siblings. They had few economic resources and spent their childhoods in the shadow of Jim Crow repression.

These boys—my father William and his brother Wesley—became extraordinary men. After graduating from Richmond’s segregated Armstrong High School in 1960, they became the first in the family to attend college.

In August of 1963, as rising seniors at their respective universities, my dad and my uncle came together to join the hundreds of thousands gathered on the National Mall for the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom. In advance of today’s 50th anniversary, I spoke with them about the months leading up to the march and their experiences on that day. Excerpts from our conversation are below.

I want to start by thinking about where you were in your life in the summer of 1963.

Wesley: In 1963, I was a rising senior going back to the University of Virginia. I was feeling very distressed about race in America at that point. In the spring of 1963, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr did visit UVA and gave a major presentation in Cabell Hall. I had the good fortune of meeting him, dining with him, walking along the grounds and introducing him. Your father, Bill, traveled down from Howard University to also join Dr. King in the presentation in Cabell Hall.

William: Not only was (Wes) the one to introduce Dr. King, but King came to UVA at Wes’ initiation. The president of the University of Virginia at the time would not even host Dr. King. I don’t know if he attended the lecture or not. I think he did not. So, the context was not a very enjoyable one. The turnout in Cabell Hall was certainly good, but the community, the white community at the University of Virginia, was certainly stressed and strained about King’s coming.

So my uncle had invited and hosted Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr, at the University of Virginia just months before the March on Washington? A bit of digging turned up a brief announcement in the school paper about Dr. King’s impending visit and another critical assessment of his remarks a few days later. But I was most struck by a 2008 article in a local Charlottesville publication “The Hook,” which assesses Dr. King’s visit to UVA as a turning point in the spring of 1963 as he prepared for the Birmingham campaign—and ultimately, the March on Washington.

Uncle Wes said in a 2008 interview, “To see him up close, to shake his hand, to share a meal with him, just King himself, alone and without an entourage, it was an important event in my life—a cornerstone in my experience.”

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