AV community commemorates King’s ‘I Have a Dream’
Empowering people to achieve
PALMDALE, Calif.—An intimate celebration took place last Saturday night in a medium-sized meeting room at the Palmdale Holiday Inn, commemorating the 47th anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech.
Hosted by Heights of Greatness Leadership Institute’s Empowerment Saturdays, the night kicked off with a display of MLK great speeches, including the momentous speech that resounds in the hearts and minds of millions all over the country.
A medley of inspirational speakers took the floor, each sharing their ideas on what it means to dream.
Evelyn White, a life coach and minister, emphasized the importance of living dreams “now.” She said many people are not living their ideal lifestyle or working their dream job; but with an attainable goal in mind and the right focus, anyone can watch their dreams become fulfilled.
“Keep your eye on the dream,” she said. “Go after it with the tenacity of a pit bull … It is never, never too late. (God’s) mercies are new everyday.”
Luciano Santini, a motivational speaker and business coach, also highlighted that without a purpose a dream cannot be fulfilled.
In the spirit of the dreamer and visionary MLK, “The Impossible Dream” was read by the evening’s mistress of ceremony, Joanne Smith, and her daughter Jasmine.
African history lecturer and local visionary, Jamaal Brown shared his personal journey to fulfilling his dream. After being diagnosed with Apical Hypertrophic Myocardiopathy, a heart condition that ended his childhood dream of becoming a professional basketball player, Brown’s life was transformed. He began to turn the timeless pages of Black history and saw himself reflected in the archives of history. He then pursued his dream of empowering and uplifting Black people through the stories and truths of Black history.
“When I look at the life of MLK, I see more than just a dreamer, I see a scholar, revolutionary and man of action,” Brown said. “I was inspired by the fact that he graduated high school at the age of 15 after skipping both the ninth and 12th grade.
“He received his Ph.D. at the age of 26. These things highlighted for me that scholarship and academic success can be attainable for someone like me.” Brown was the first African American valedictorian to graduate from his high school Lancaster High.
He also shared that the blood King shed gave birth to a generation of revolutionary leaders, visionaries, and scholars like himself.
Nannette Barrie, real estate agent and speaker, shared that it is through unwavering faith that dreams are attained. She said each obstacle that comes makes dreams worthwhile and that much sweeter. Like the butterfly has to fight to get out of its cocoon, she pointed out, it is through that barrier it gains the strength to fly.
Finally, the night concluded with a powerful rendition of King’s speech, sprinkled with a message of relevance and progress by V. Jesse Smith.
Speaking in a rhythmic and sing-song voice reminiscent of the assassinated civil rights leader, Smith reminded the audience that the power to dream and enact change within society begins with the power innately found in each individual.
“The same power that was in King is the same power in us today,” Smith proclaimed. “God didn’t make us out of mediocrity. Whatever your dreams are, don’t approach them half-heartedly.”
Smith is the organizer of Heights of Greatness Leadership Institute and coordinated Saturday’s event. He plans to continue the meetings every fourth Saturday of the month.
The next free Empowerment Saturday is Sept. 25 at the Holiday Inn in Palmdale. (661) 992-9052.
On August 28, 2011, a day chosen to celebrate the 48th anniversary of Dr. King’s famous “I Have A Dream” speech on the Washington Mall, another major milestone will occur. For the first time in American history, a centerpiece construction of a permanent stone and bronze monument will be erected in the nation’s capital for an African American who was not a former American president.
Keller Williams Realty, in conjunction with Palmdale and the Antelope Valley Mall, announced the results of their recent Red Day events.
Between their food drive and Red Day Walk, the groups raised $12,645 in cash and more than 10,000 pounds of food for local charities including South Antelope Valley Emergency Services (SAVES), Grace Resources, the WAVE Foundation and the American Cancer Society.
SANTA CLARITA, Calif. — Peter Sagan of Slovakia sprinted past Australian Michael Matthews to win today’s third stage of the Tour of California, the nation’s largest cycling event.
Sagan completed the 110.3-mile stage from Palmdale to Santa Clarita in four hours, 20 minutes, 31 seconds. Each of the next 99 cyclists were credited with the same time.
“The last three kilometers were crazy with all the sprinters who wanted to win,” Sagan said.
PALMDALE, Calif. — The eighth edition of the Tour of California begins two days of racing in Los Angeles County today with a 110.3-mile stage from Palmdale to Santa Clarita.
The 121 cyclists will leave from Marie Kerr Park at 11:20 a.m. for a stage that will feature racing through the hills north of Santa Clarita along San Francisquito Canyon and a 22-mile climb up Lake Hughes Road, followed by a gradual 18-mile descent down Spunky Canyon and Bouquet Road.
LOS ANGELES, Calif. — The Southland again will bake in dry heat today, creating what the National Weather Service (NWS) called an “elevated fire danger” falling short of red flag conditions.
“A strong upper-level high-pressure system in combination with weak onshore flow near the surface brought record-breaking triple-digit heat to portions of the valleys and foothills on Sunday,” noted an NWS advisory.