The 2018 keynote speaker is Martin Luther King III, human rights advocate, community activist, political leader and the oldest son of King. The keynote, which will be held on Sunday, Feb. 18 at 5 p.m. in the University Student Commons, Commonwealth Ballroom, will be moderated by Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney.
The event is free and open to the public. Guests can RSVP at: go.vcu.edu/mlk3keynote. Overflow seating will be available in the University Student Commons, Commons Theater.
As the oldest son of the late Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Mrs. Coretta Scott King, Martin Luther King III serves as an ambassador of his parents' legacy of nonviolent social change.
A graduate of his father's Alma mater, Morehouse College, Mr. King has devoted his life to working in the nonprofit sector to promote civil rights and global human rights and to eradicate the “triple evils” of racism, militarism and poverty his father identified as the scourges of humankind. As a high school student, he served as a Page to Senator Edward Kennedy, and continued his public service, supporting social change movements through speaking engagements, appearances and his writing. He was later elected as a member of the Fulton County, GA Board of Commissioners, representing over 700,000 residents.
As the elected president of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC), the organization co-founded by his father, Mr. King reinvigorated SCLC by stabilizing the governance, program and development components. As founder and president of Realizing the Dream, Inc., he took his father’s message to a global audience, spearheading nonviolence training in Bosnia and Herzegovina, India, Israel and Palestine, Kenya, Sri Lanka and the United States.
A former President and CEO of the Atlanta-based King Center, Mr. King remains a member of its Board of Directors. In addition, he serves as a board member of: Southern Christian Leadership Conference, Drum Major Institute, a New York based Think-Tank and the Metropolitan West Management Asset Corporation.
Mr. King has also served as an election monitor and observer in South Africa, Nigeria and Kenya. In addition, Mr. King has conducted nearly 40 Poverty Study Tours in a groundbreaking initiative, which has sparked public debate and law enforcement advocacy on the issue of poverty.
In conjunction with Ambassador Andrew Young and other partners, Mr. King co-founded Bounce TV, the first independently owned and operated TV network featuring African Americans. The network’s content includes movies, sports, documentaries and original programming.
The recipient of numerous awards and honorary degrees, Mr. King is married to Arndrea Waters King and the father of a daughter, Yolanda Rene named in honor of his late sister Yolanda Denise King.