More than 730 guests celebrated the legacy of the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., at KCBA's Annual Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Luncheon on January 17 at the Seattle Sheraton Hotel.
The program featured civil rights pioneer and peace activist Diane Nash. Her keynote address - "Reflections on the Civil Rights Movement" - provided fascinating insight into Nash's tireless efforts to promote racial justice and civil rights.
In early 1961, Nash was jailed along with Charles Sherrod and other activists. Instead of following the path of least resistance by posting bail and being released, Nash willingly chose to be incarcerated as a powerful act of nonviolent civil disobedience. In a letter written by Dr. King, he said in part, "It is good to know that there still remains a creative minority, who would rather lose in a cause that will ultimately win than to win in a cause that will ultimately fail."
During that same year, Nash had a crucial role in sustaining the freedom rides into Mississippi, which were begun by CORE (Congress of Racial Equality). Nash then became head of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee's (SNCC) direct action campaigns, where she continued her passionate activism, taking part in the Birmingham Campaign and the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom.
In 1965, the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) awarded Nash the Rosa Parks Award for her leading role in organizing the Alabama Project and Selma Voting Rights Movement. To this day, Diane Nash continues to remind us of Dr. King's dream and the importance of continuing to fight for equal rights and social justice.
As part of the event, Jamila Johnson of Schwabe, Williamson & Wyatt, a former Bar Scholar, asked attendees to consider giving to the Minority Law School Scholarship Fund. As a result of the attendees' generosity, KCBF raised $7,000 for the King County Bar Foundation Scholarship Fund. Since 1970, KCBF has provided more than $2 million for the Minority Law School Scholarship Fund and 1,000 scholarships have been awarded to minority law students in Washington. In 2013 alone, KCBF awarded $130,000 for students at the Seattle University and University of Washington law schools.
Luncheon guests also were once again treated to a terrific musical performance by the Graham Hill Elementary School Chorus.
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